Sleep-Deprived Semi Driver In Tracy Morgan Case Not Alone
I am sure that I was not the only person to be shocked and saddened to learn that Tracy Morgan — the outrageous comedian known for his work on Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock — was in critical condition after a crash on the New Jersey Turnpike last week. One of Mr. Morgan’s colleagues who was also in the van was tragically killed.
According to an NBC News story, Mr. Morgan was traveling toward New York City in a luxury van when the van was rear-ended on the crowded road by a semi tractor-trailer. on the New Jersey Turnpike. Further investigation of the crash revealed that the truck driver who hit the Morgan vehicle, Kevin Roper, had not slept in more than 24 hours before the accident.
Federal transportation rules limit the number of hours that heavy truck (semi tractor trailers) drivers can operate their rigs. For example, truckers are only allowed to work 70 hours per week, and can only restart the 70 hours after a 34 hour break once per week.
Ironically, on the same day that Mr. Morgan was catastrophically injured and his friend died, the United States Senate was passing a new measure that would de-fund the government’s ability to enforce the limitations on drivers’ hours. Apparently the trucking industry doesn’t like the rules much, and has been leading an all-out lobbying assault on Congress. Trucking companies say that these measures are costing more than they are worth in terms of safety.
As a Florida personal injury attorneys who regularly handles cases for people injured by heavy trucks, and their loved ones in Wrongful Death actions, I am confident that driver hours rules save lives, and keep catastrophic medical conditions from happening. Our firm believes that the current rules should remain in place. What do you think?
If you have any questions regarding a Florida truck accident, or suspect that a driver involved in a crash had been behind the wheel without sleep too long, call Winter Park personal injury attorneys Kim Cullen and Robert Hemphill at 407-254-4901.