As our story continues to spread, I
have been met with offended truck drivers, for this I will not apologize. I will, however express that our website was not designed to
lash out at ALL semi drivers. I do believe that there are drivers out
there that do drive safely and for that, I thank you. It is, however
focused at government officials, law enforcement, companies and their drivers
that do not obey the speed limits, that do falsify their log books,
that continue to take illegal drugs to stay awake and allow their
companies to push them to the limits. I understand this is your bread
and butter but Janelle was my daughter and I have a right to be upset. I have a
right to voice my opinion.
Just recently, I was sent a link to a
link to join a "truck forum", however I decided not to join in the
discussion. I did, however get the opportunity to read some of their comments.
One comment stood out more then the others. It read, "Do these people
realize that by demanding more frequent and tougher DOT (Department of
Transportation) inspections the drivers will be under more pressure to
make up for the lost time spent at the inspection point? "I doubt that the increased DOT inspections will result in a comparable increase of
infractions, but the lost time may cause truckers to drive MORE
recklessly to try and make up time for the delays." He goes on to say
that I need to learn more about the trucking industry. My remark to this is, I
did not ask for this. I would prefer voicing my opinion to a 15 year
old child about life. The death of my daughter did not come with
instructions or a manual. I will continue to learn more about the "industry" and my voice will become stronger, sir.
hundreds of senseless deaths caused every week on our freeways by truck drivers
that are pushed to the limit by the companies that they work for. In
2003 there were a total of 5,036 death related fatalities, in 2004, a
total of 5,190 and in 2005 a total of 5,212 These numbers do not
include bodily injuries, which usually resulted in traumatic brain injuries or
the loss of a limb. These statistics only prove that things are not
improving, they are getting worse.
I use to work for a company that sent
truck drivers daily. I know how the system works. You tell the company
that the cargo needs to be delivered by the next day and they promise to have it
there. It was sometimes a 48 hour trip but they promised to have the
cargo delivered the next day. They are rewarded for bad behavior rather
than good behavior. Many drivers are over logged, drive too fast, and
take drugs to keep them awake. Not to mention there is not enough law
enforcement on the freeways to counteract the actions of these drivers. These
are machines that can and will kill again. While traveling on our trip
we passed through three states. Indiana, Illinois and Missouri. During
this trip, we only noticed three patrol units on the freeways. That was one patrol car per state.
We also noticed that many weigh
stations were closed. The place where vehicle inspections are made.
The place where trucks are checked for proper weight. States are concerned
that these trucks will weigh too much and ruin their roads. What about
the many lives that are ruined daily because of drivers? I feel not
only should their trucks be weighed and inspected but their log books
inspected as well. What better place for truckers to be caught breaking the
laws. I have also learned that drivers bypass the weigh stations by
using side roads. Mobile Patrol, when in use, should be used to
intercept these drivers.
Drivers should be fined heavily along with their
companies when they are caught breaking the laws. If more companies
were held responsible, then perhaps they would enforce their drivers to obey the laws rather then break them.
Many trucks are Governed,
which means they are only allowed to travel a certain speed limit but these devices are easily disassembled, allowing trucks to travel at speeds
that are beyond safe. Trucks are also equipped with devices that
allows their companies to shut down their trucks after traveling for so
many hours. One of the drivers that killed my daughter was allegedly logged for
20 hours of driving, causing him to fall asleep. Not to mention, he
tested positive for drugs, he was on parole through the state of
Indiana for drunk driving in 2000 which resulted in a death. He was
released from prison a year ago and was given a CDL license and is now back in
prison awaiting yet another trial for the death of two more
My daughter died a senseless death, along with thousand others.
It is time for our government to step up to the plate and take
responsibility, along with our law enforcement, the drivers behind the
wheel and the companies that allow this to continue.