Tracy Morgan wreck spotlights long-haul trucking woes

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The crash last Saturday involving comedian Tracy Morgan, his entourage and a Walmart truck driver accused of overt fatigue, has again brought to the forefront the inherent potential dangers of long-haul trucking.

Bill Briggs, writing for the website of NBC news, has filed a lengthy and compression article titled: “Tracy Morgan Crash: Why Are Some Long-Haul Truckers So Tired?”

In the article, Briggs writes in part:

“One year ago, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) installed several rules to try to keep weary truckers off highways, including mandating a 30-minute break during the first eight hours of their shift and reducing maximum workweeks to 70 hours over eight days — including a 34-hour break once per week.”

“But federal transportation officials say if commercial drivers feel a time squeeze that induces them to skip breaks or naps, the blame rests with transportation companies that demand loads be hauled and delivered to certain places by exact times.”

Tracy Morgan suffered critical injuries last Saturday when his vehicle was hit by a Walmart truck.
Tracy Morgan suffered critical injuries last Saturday when his vehicle was hit by a Walmart truck.

Marissa Padilla, director of communications for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, part of the DOT, commented:

“No matter what the limits on driving and work hours are, if the motor carrier and driver plan the schedule so tightly that the driver can barely complete the run legally, this problem will occur.”

“This rule also does not prevent carriers and drivers from setting their own schedules, nor does it restrict drivers from being on the road during any time of the day,” reads the fact sheet.”

The article closely examines the accusations against driver of the Walmart truck. Morgan remains in critical condition.

The collision killed Morgan’s fellow passenger, comedian James McNair, who performed under the name Jimmy Mack. Comedians Ardie Fuqua and Harris Stanton were also injured.

To read the complete article, visit: Tracy Morgan Crash



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