Carrier shut down after fatal crash, violations | 'Super load' a slow-go through Ohio July 8

Trucking news and briefs for Wednesday, July 3, 2024:

FMCSA shuts down California-based carrier after deadly crash

Indio, California-based Manrique Agramon, doing business as Monique Trucking, was declared an imminent hazard to public safety and ordered out-of-service by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration following a deadly June 11 crash.

On that day, an employee of Monique Trucking was hauling in Colorado when the driver failed to properly maneuver around other vehicles and caused a crash involving six vehicles. One of the drivers of the vehicles involved was killed and others were injured.

Following the crash, FMCSA conducted a compliance investigation and concluded that Monique Trucking is “egregiously noncompliant with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) and has been cited with numerous serious violations of the FMCSRs in an investigation and in roadside inspections.”

Monique Trucking could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

Specifically, FMCSA said the company did not have in place a Controlled Substances and Alcohol Use Testing Program and was not registered in the FMCSA Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse; failed to ensure that the driver employed met CDL standards; failed to comply with hours of service requirements; and failed to comply with vehicle maintenance and inspection standards.

FMCSA’s SAFER system shows a 75% vehicle out-of-service percentage for the two-truck fleet, with three OOS orders in four inspections. The company also shows a 100% driver OOS percentage with six inspections.

The investigation revealed that leadership of Monique Trucking demonstrated a lack of knowledge of safety regulations despite receiving multiple roadside violations in the two years preceding the June 11 crash, FMCSA said.  

FMCSA’s investigation concluded that Monique Trucking “lacks safety management controls to ensure that its drivers are qualified to operate its CMVs, that its drivers operate its CMVs safely, or that its CMVs are in safe operating condition.”

The OOS order said the cumulative violations of federal regulations “substantially increase the likelihood of death or serious injury to [Monique Trucking] drivers and the motoring public and establish that [the] entire motor carrier operation is an imminent hazard.”  

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Failing to comply with the provisions of the order may result in civil penalties of up to $33,252 for each violation, FMCSA said. Motor carriers may also be assessed civil penalties of not less than $13,300 for operating in interstate commerce without operating authority registration, and up to $18,758 for operating a CMV in interstate commerce without USDOT Number registration. Knowing and/or willful violations may result in criminal penalties.

[Related: New Jersey-based driver shut down after crash, multiple DUIs]

Another 900,000-pound ‘super load’ slow-rolling through Ohio

Ohio super loadA 916,000-pound air processor used in silicon chip manufacturing will move from the Ohio River to New Albany, Ohio, from July 8-16.Ohio DOT

The 13th of nearly two dozen “super loads,” and second of four loads that exceed 900,000 pounds, will depart the dock site in Adams County, Ohio, along the Ohio River east of Cincinnati on Monday, July 8. The convoy will head to New Albany to deliver the load to the site of a new Intel plant in Licking County.

This load, an air processor known as a cold box used in the silicon chip manufacturing process, measures approximately 23 feet tall, 20 feet wide, 280 feet long, and weighs 916,000 pounds.

The move is scheduled to take more than a week. It will make stops in West Portsmouth, Lucasville, Chillicothe, Rickenbacker, Pickerington, and Pataskala, before being delivered on Tuesday, July 16.

The extra-large load will have significant traffic impacts as it moves, Ohio DOT said. Motorists and truckers are strongly encouraged to plan ahead and avoid the route while the load is moving.

Due to the size of the load and slow speed of the convoy, the move will begin earlier than previous trips to ensure each move can be completed during daylight hours.

Because of an anticipated increased interest from the public, large crowds are also expected along the route, causing additional traffic delays.

Since each load will be escorted by several Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers, emergency traffic will get around the rolling roadblock with minimal delay, ODOT added. Working with partners like local governments and utility companies, obstructions along the route such as large overhead signs, traffic signals, and utility lines have been adjusted and moved.

[Related: Hauling smart with high, wide and sometimes ugly freight]

Veterans, active military eat free at TA on July 4

TravelCenters of America is inviting all active-duty military, veterans and reservists to enjoy a complimentary meal on Thursday, July 4, at participating TA, Petro and TA Express restaurants nationwide.

Anyone who has served in the armed forces can receive a complimentary meal of their choice by showing proof of service to their server prior to ordering. Proof of service includes: U.S. Uniformed Services ID card, current Leave and Earnings Statement (LES), veterans' organization membership card, photograph in uniform, DD214 form, a citation or commendation.

Guests may also visit the Fallen Soldier Tables that will be on display at some restaurants on July 4. This single place setting at an empty table demonstrates the sacrifices of those who gave their lives to protect our freedom.

[Related: Independence Day rewind: '78 W900A's transformation to 'The Patriot' hot rod]

New Love’s opens in NE Ohio

Truckers hauling across I-76 in Ohio have a new option for parking, fueling and more with the opening of a new Love’s Travel Stops location in North Lima.

The new stop features 108 truck parking spaces, a Speedco opening in the coming weeks, Hardee’s and Subway restaurants, eight diesel lanes, seven showers and more.

[Related: Survey says: Paid truck parking generally not utilized, resented by many truckers