Illinois is known for its vast farmland, and with farmland comes the agricultural vehicles that tend to it. These vehicles are particularly notorious on country roads and smaller state highways that cut through small towns. When an agricultural vehicle enters normal traffic, traffic patterns often have to make quick changes so that everyone remains safe. Regardless of intentions, accidents happen; whether a passenger vehicle must immediately slow down so as to not hit an agricultural vehicle entering the road, or if a passenger vehicle attempts to pass an agricultural vehicle on a two-lane road, operating an agricultural vehicle can be very dangerous. Injuries range from mild to severe, and accidents can involve more than two vehicles.
Agricultural Vehicle Accident Statistics
According to OSHA and a study published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2011 there were 570 fatalities among farm workers. Of those 570 fatalities, 276 were caused by vehicle accidents. In fact, between 2003 and 2011, farm tractors accounted for 1,533 deaths. Farm vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death and injury among farm workers, and rollovers are the single deadliest type of incident. In fact, according to the National Safety Council, 15,000 accidents involve agricultural vehicles annually. This number lines up with the fact that while 19% of Americans live in rural areas, 55% of highway deaths occur on roads that are considered rural.
Recovery From an Agricultural Vehicle Accident
Under Illinois law, if you have been involved in an agricultural vehicle accident, you may be entitled to recover medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering or disfigurement compensation, and loss of consortium. If a loved one has been killed as a result of such an accident, you may be entitled to recovery for wrongful death.
Illinois Time Limits on Filing Suit
Illinois sets a time limit of two years to file a personal injury lawsuit in the state’s civil court system. In most cases, this two-year time limit, known as a “statute of limitations,” begins to run on the date of the accident. Sometimes, however, a statute of limitations might run from the date that you discovered you were injured, rather than the date of the event that injured you. This later date is known as a “discovery date.”
For injury claims against a city or county, you have one year to file a lawsuit. The time limit to sue the state is generally two years, but you must file a formal claim within one year in order to sue.
A qualified personal injury attorney can help guide you through this difficult time and alleviate some of the stress.
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
For a confidential, compassionate, in-depth, free, and, most importantly, thorough consultation with a Rockford Personal Injury Lawyer about your agricultural or farm vehicle auto accident injury case in Rockford, Belvidere, Freeport, Rochelle, Oregon, Loves Park, Byron, Machesney Park, Roscoe, Rockton, or elsewhere in the State of Illinois, call or text message us at (815) 391-0089, or e-mail us 24/7/365. We offer in-office consultations, and routinely make visits to clients’ homes, hospital rooms, nursing homes, and other off-site locations to make retaining our services as easy as possible.