Posted On: March 5, 2009 by Steven J. Malman

Illinois Highway Construction Worker Injured on the Job Files Third Party Lawsuit Against Motorist

A couple is suing a driver for injuries the man sustained while working on the job as a highway construction worker. Craig and Collette Poettker filed their Illinois personal injury lawsuit in St. Clair County Circuit Court last week against motorist Joseph Courtney. The Poettkers are seeking over $700,000 in damages.

The Illinois work accident reportedly took place in a construction zone on Highway 161 on March 2, 2007 when Courtney, who was driving on the road, rammed through a barricade while trying to change lanes in the construction area. Craig claims that as a result of Courtney’s driving, flying debris struck him and caused serious, permanent leg and head injuries. He says that he experienced extreme mental and physical pain, lost wages from taking time off work, has incurred multiple medical expenses, and is unable to deal with ordinary life matters. Collette is claiming loss of her husband’s consortium and society.

Their Illinois civil complaint accuses Courtney of negligence when he drove through the construction zone at over 35 mph and did not slow down even though a speed limit was posted for when workers were in the area. The couple is also accusing him of failing to properly control his vehicle and not keeping a proper lookout for hazards on the road.

Also named in the Illinois car accident lawsuit is Helitech, the company that Courtney was working for at the time of the catastrophic work accident. Craig claims that Helitech should have known better than to allow Courtney to drive for work when he had a history of speeding violations.

Highway Construction Accidents
Ideally, a highway construction site will be properly set up to minimize injuries to workers. However, merely placing this type of work area on a road can create a hazardous situation for both highway construction workers and motorists.

Common causes of highway construction accidents include:
• Road debris
• Inadequate warning signs
• Cones that are placed in the wrong spots
• Crane accidents

In Illinois, injured highway construction workers are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if they sustained their injuries while on the job. They also may be entitled to third party compensation for personal injury.

Flying debris on highway caused construction worker's injuries, suit claims, The Madison/St Clair Record, March 5, 2009

Related Web Resources:
Construction Laborers, Bureau of Labor Statistics

Construction, US Department of Labor

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