NTSB Investigation Unveils Numerous Issues In Truck Crash
An accident in Idaho that killed four has tangled up a trucking company in Irving, Texas and involved the NTSB. The Idaho Statesman reports.
The crash was so bad that federal authorities got involved. According to the report, a semitruck driver drifted in and out of his lane over 20 times in 17 minutes before crashing into the back of a Jeep Wrangler in a construction zone and catching fire. The crash happened on I-84 in 2018.
The driver of the truck died as well as the three people in the Jeep, all of whom were Senior Airmen. Now the NTSB has concluded that it was driver fatigue that caused the truck driver to forget to slow down.
“The driver’s inability to maintain his vehicle’s lane positions, as well as his complete lack of response to the traffic queue as he came upon it, are consistent with a fatigue-related lapse in vigilance,” the NTSB concluded.
Furthermore, the NTSB called out the Idaho Transportation Department for shutting down too many lanes and causing a bottleneck. Three of the four lanes going east were shut down and clogged up traffic too much. The contractor was only authorized to close two lanes, but despite inspectors noticing three lanes closed they did not take action. Drivers were already in stop-and-go traffic well before signs that told them to slow down for an approaching construction zone due to the congestion.
It is believed that the driver falsified his driving hours. He told his employer that his electronic log device wasn’t working and was using paper records. Instead of getting the required amount of sleep, he took brief naps along the way.