Chicago Truck Accident Lawyer Patrick A. Salvi Says Panel Comments Underscore Complexity of Tractor-Trailer Crashes

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Salvi, managing equity partner with the firm of Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., agrees with an accident reconstruction specialist’s comments this week to an advisory panel, saying police accident reports, alone, may not tell the whole story of a truck accident.

Attorney representing truck accident victims in Chicago and Illinois.

Patrick A. Salvi

[I]t’s important to look at a variety of different sources in addition to the police report and to explore all aspects when investigating these accidents for the purpose of obtaining full compensation for victims.

Patrick A. Salvi, a Chicago lawyer who represents victims of truck accidents, today echoed comments made this week by an accident reconstruction specialist who spoke to an advisory panel that is looking into the role police reports can play in assessing truck carriers’ fault in accidents.

According to, Jeffrey Kidd of Georgia spoke to the Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) Subcommittee of the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (MCSAC) in a meeting this week in Virginia.

He told the panel that “[p]olice accident reports are not reliable enough to determine who’s at fault in truck crashes” – specifically for the purposes of the CSA’s Safety Measurement System, which rates and compares truck carriers’ crash histories, according to the news report.

The subcommittee is working on recommendations for the full MCSAC panel, which will in turn report to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, said.

“We agree with Mr. Kidd: In some cases, law enforcement officials may be pressed by time and limited in their training and resources when investigating truck accidents, which can be highly complex matters,” said Salvi, managing equity partner of the leading Illinois personal injury firm of Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C.

“That’s why it’s important to look at a variety of different sources in addition to the police report and to explore all aspects when investigating these accidents for the purpose of obtaining full compensation for victims,” Salvi added.

“The goal is to conduct as thorough of an investigation as possible in order to determine how the accident happened and who should be held accountable for the damage done, which often includes the truck carrier.”

According to, Kidd told the committee that a state may not have enough officers who are certified North American Standard inspectors or trained in “trucking basics” such as braking, licensing, hours of service or vehicle configurations. He also said officers may make errors that result in the loss of important electronic data.

“These comments underscore the fact that a police report alone is not enough to get a full picture of the crash,” Salvi said. “That’s the case with all motor vehicle accidents, and certainly, it’s true when it comes to tractor-trailer crashes.”

Salvi said that one who believes they have been harmed in an accident due to the negligence of a truck driver or truck carrier should consult with an attorney who has the experience and resources to handle such cases.

“Timing is also highly important when collecting evidence in these cases,” he added. “So, it’s important to act quickly after an accident in order to protect one’s rights.”

About Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C.

Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. is a leading Chicago personal injury firm with offices in Chicago (22 West Washington Street, Suite 1600, Chicago IL 60602) and Waukegan (218 North Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue, Waukegan, IL 60085). In addition to representing clients in catastrophic personal injury, medical malpractice, aviation and product liability cases, the firm focuses on car and truck accidents, airplane and train accidents, construction injuries, birth injuries, brain injuries, unsafe properties and animal attacks. The firm has obtained more than $640 million on behalf of its clients in personal injury and wrongful death cases, including 190 multi-million dollar verdicts or settlements. For more information, call (312) 372-1227 or use the firm’s online contact form.

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