Tagged Articles

commercial driver 92 articles

Unsafe motor carriers can slide through loopholes, re-open under a new name

A report in Monday’s Baltimore Sun exposes how easy it is for some motor carriers with a long history of safety violations and crashes to reincarnate under a new name and business license after authorities shut them down. These are the companies that repeatedly demonstrate a blaring disregard for the law, take advantage of regulatory loopholes, and give the trucking industry an undeservedly bad reputation. According to the Baltimore Sun, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) deemed Gunthers Transport LLC of Hanover, Maryland, an “imminent hazard” to the public and ordered it off the road. The company, which owned ... Read More

Loopholes allow bad commercial drivers to stay behind the wheel

Considering all the efforts the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is giving to restricting hours-of-service rules and drivers with sleep apnea in the name of safety, the loopholes in federal laws that allow unsafe commercial drivers with a history of violations to stay behind the wheel seem all the more outrageous. An investigative report by Cleveland, Ohio’s 5 On Your Side exposes the loopholes in FMCSA regulations that it says “allow truckers to remain behind the wheel despite excessive tickets and serious accidents.” The report tells the tragic stories of two Ohio motorists whose lives were shattered just because their ... Read More

Arkansas jury finds trucking company liable for man’s death, issues verdict for $7 million

A Kentucky trucking company must pay $7 million in damages for hiring an unqualified driver and pushing him to drive an excessively long route, which resulted in a crash that killed another commercial truck driver, a U.S. District Court jury in Harrison, Arkansas, ordered. Dunaway Timber Co. of Fordsville, KY hired Morgan Quisenberry, 54, to drive tractor trailers even though he had crashed while hauling a truck load of hazardous materials just prior to his employment. Mr. Quisenbery also had his license revoked twice for driving while intoxicated, and should not have been in possession of a commercial driver’s license ... Read More

Farm trucks often exempted from commercial regulations, but not from liability

Throughout the Midwest, farmers are harvesting their final crops of the season, which means more large farm trucks laden with grain are out on the roads, hauling their produce to suppliers. Here in the Deep South, the story is much the same; big rigs carrying tons of cotton and other harvests to market share the roads with other motorists. The federal government allows states to mandate whether a commercial driver’s license (CDL) is required for drivers of farm trucks in their respective states. Not surprisingly, Alabama and other primarily agricultural states have instituted lax laws for farm vehicles in an ... Read More

Truck driver receives $10 million for injuries received in Walmart parking lot

The Colorado Supreme Court has upheld an award of nearly $10 million to a commercial truck driver who sued Walmart after she slipped and fell in the parking lot of a northern Colorado branch while making a delivery in December 2007. Holly Averyt, 41, of Cheyenne, Wyoming, alleged in her lawsuit against the retail giant that a containment device designed to prevent the store’s deli grease from entering the sewer overflowed, creating a 185-foot slick in the parking lot and truck ramp area. Ms. Averyt’s lawsuit claimed Walmart allowed the oil slick to accumulate for seven days. Since her fall ... Read More

NTSB investigators recreate parts of fatal Amtrak crash outside Reno

Federal officials investigating the deadly June 24 Amtrak crash near Reno, Nevada, say the train’s engineer sounded the horn at least 4 times before a commercial truck hauling a double trailer ran the crossing gate and crashed into the train, killing six people and injuring 20 others. The National Transportation Safety Board concluded a five-day investigation at the crash site on October 21. The probe included recreating various dynamics of the crash using a truck and pair of trailers provided by John Davis Trucking, the owner of the truck involved in the crash. Nevada’s Highway Patrol and Transportation Department provided ... Read More

Fuel tanker explodes near Houston

The driver of a fuel tanker told police that he heard a loud pop as he traveled along U.S. 59 in Sugar Land, Texas, Thursday night. He exited the freeway about 11:30 p.m. to investigate and found that the back wheels of his truck, which was laden with 9,000 gallons of diesel, were on fire. The flames quickly engulfed the truck and the vehicle exploded, creating a fire so intense that it burned nearby utility poles and knocked out power to homes and businesses in the area. No injuries were reported. Authorities shut down both the northbound and southbound sections ... Read More

Secretary LaHood warns Republican senator not to obstruct proposed hours-of-service changes

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood sent a letter last week to Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire asking her not to obstruct his agency’s proposed hours-of-service rule changes. Secretary LaHood, himself a Republican, has been a strong advocate for better motor carrier safety and strongly endorses the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s proposed HOS changes, which are aimed at further reducing the number of fatigue-related commercial vehicle crashes and deaths on U.S. roads and highways. Secretary LaHood told Senator Ayotte that “Americans expect safe travel each and every day,” especially when they are sharing the roads with large commercial vehicles ... Read More

Mexican truck makes first long-haul U.S. delivery

U.S. government-approved Mexican truck drivers and carriers begin making long-haul deliveries across the border into the United States today under the recommencement of a program mandated by the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The cross-border program has resumed despite heated opposition by opponents who claim it will lead to a loss of American jobs, more pollution, and less safe highways. The pilot program, which allows Mexican carriers to make deliveries in the U.S. further than the standard 25-mile restriction, originally launched in 2007 with 31 Mexican trucking firms participating by 2008, but Congress abruptly de-funded it. Mexican authorities ... Read More

Operation Safe Driver aims to improve commercial driving safety across three countries

Law enforcement authorities and regulators throughout the U.S., Canada, and Mexico launched a comprehensive truck safety program on Sunday in an effort to boost traffic safety on highways throughout North America. Sponsored by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), and a number of private associations and government agencies, Operation Safe Driver will step up surveillance and inspections on North American roads, with a special focus on distracted and aggressive commercial drivers. “Each year more than 36,000 people die on the roadways throughout North America — about 4,000 of which are related to large ... Read More