DOT orders N.C. driver to cease operation after hitting, killing child

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has ordered that Johnny Allen Spell — a driver licensed in the state of North Carolina — cease commercial vehicle operation, deeming him an “imminent hazard to public safety.”

Last week, Spell hit a and killed a child in Sampson County, N.C., on U.S. Highway 421 who was exiting a school bus. The bus was stopped and had its stop sign and warning lights engaged.

Spell then fled the scene in his truck and was in possession of drugs. He faces charges of involuntary manslaughter, a felony hit and run, improper passing of a stopped school bus, reckless driving and driving while using or in the possession of drugs.

Safety is our highest priority,” said outgoing U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “Unsafe truck drivers who endanger children and other members of the public have no business on our nation’s roads.”

Spell was a driver for Ricky Lucas Trucking, based in Roseboro, N.C.

FMCSA’s out-of-service order is based upon “disregard for federal safety regulations and interstate operations,” says the agency’s announcement.