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U.S. Department of Transportation Declares Illinois Long-Haul Truck Driver to be an Imminent Hazard to Public Safety

Sections: Car Safety, Chassis, Powertrain

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WASHINGTON – They say the most important technology in a vehicle is the part behind the wheel. And sometimes, that part goes bad and needs to be removed. Such is the case in Illinois where the U.S. DOT has banned a truck driver from getting behind the wheel.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has declared Illinois-licensed truck driver Stewart G. Snedeker to be an imminent hazard to public safety and has ordered him not to operate any commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce. Snedeker was served the federal order Oct. 4, 2013.

“Safety should be the top priority of every driver of every vehicle out on our nation’s highways and roads,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We will continue to work with our state law enforcement partners to protect the motoring public through vigorous enforcement of traffic laws and driver and motor vehicle regulations that prevent needless crashes and save lives.”

On June 23, 2013, Snedeker, a commercial driver’s license (CDL) holder, was operating a tractor-trailer on Interstate 75 in Campbell County, Tenn., when he struck a Tennessee Highway Patrol cruiser and a tow truck that were parked on the roadway shoulder with their emergency lights flashing. A Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper was seriously injured in the crash. Snedeker fled in his truck and was later apprehended by Campbell County Sheriff Deputies approximately 10 miles from the crash scene where he was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of an intoxicant or drug, reckless endangerment, vehicular assault, leaving the scene of a crash with an injury, possession of drug paraphernalia, and other state violations.

A subsequent investigation by FMCSA determined that Snedeker had potentially disqualifying medical conditions and falsified his medical history to wrongfully obtain a medical examiner certificate required by federal regulations to operate commercial motor vehicles.

“It is unacceptable for a truck or bus company, or any of its drivers, to disregard the law and put travelers at risk,” said FMCSA Administrator Anne S. Ferro. “We will continue our aggressive efforts to prevent unsafe commercial drivers from getting behind the wheel and endangering the public.”

FMCSA’s imminent hazard out-of-service order for Snedeker is based on his violation of federal safety regulations.

Since the beginning of 2013, FMCSA has declared eight commercial driver’s license holders as imminent hazards, blocking them from operating in interstate commerce.

SOURCE: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

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