Here are the questions asked previously and the answers follow.
Q: How much over the permissible hours was the driver? Is this a chronic issue with this company and their drivers?
A: Driver violated three different DOT hour limitation rules and was well over the hours permitted by DOT safety rules. Admitted that the driver had a GPS tracking device installed in the truck. Plaintiff alleges the GPS device allowed the company to track the driver’s hours and whereabouts in real time, but the company either failed to do so or just ignored the fact he was over hours and sent him on another delivery anyway. A 14-hour in service rule was violated by approximately 20 hours. An 11-hour driving rule was violated by approximately 15 hours. The sufficient rest rule of not being in service more than 60 hours in 7 consecutive days was violated by approximately 19 hours. The company posted a hard copy of an e-mail a year before the incident at its offices regarding the importance of timely deliveries to the particular customer for which this delivery was being made, indicating that timely deliveries to that particular customer were for important the trucking company’s business and bottom line.
Q: Was he using his cell phone? Text or talk?
A: The driver will admit he missed a call and was trying to return the call just prior to the accident and was putting his cell phone away when crash occurred. Driver will also admit he was unfamiliar with his route and was on and off the phone with co-workers for directions while on the road to make the delivery.
Q: What kind of history does the driver have?
A: The driver was only with this company for 3 weeks prior to the accident. His employment application listed 3 years prior experience as a truck driver, but the company did not follow through to check references. The truck driving school which issued his commercial driver’s license (CDL) had lost its accreditation prior to this accident. If the employer had followed DOT Bulletins, they would have learned before the accident that the driver "did not have proper training" and that his CDL was invalid.
Q: What kind of history does the company have?
A: No knowledge of company history other than this incident. It is a large trucking company with many regional offices.
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