January 11, 2011 at 6:00 pm in INFORUM
Criminal charges could be possible in the death of a man struck during a series of crashes on Interstate 94 during a Dec. 30 blizzard, a state trooper said Tuesday. Continue Reading
Tags: blizzard, death, Interstate 94, snow, weather 41 Comments »
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charge him with murder 1 and put him away for good. yeah thats it
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 1 21
i don’t understand the need for charges here.
Like or Dislike: 14 2
Charges are required due to his negligence in driving too fast for the conditions.
Once again we see that a commercial vehicle was the primary cause for a major accident during a defined bad weather period.
When is our legislature going to wake up to this growing menace on the roads from these commercial vehicles who are required to be working during these “Travel not advised” periods?
Like or Dislike: 9 18
Bio, it could have been any type of vehicle that caused an accident like this. It just so happens it was a semi, it’s obvious you have something against truck drivers that deliver YOUR goods. Up to the very second this incident happened the interstate was open, so every vehicle on that road at the time, legally was allowed to be there. It is this accident the contributed to the road being shut down.
If there were vehicle already on the road when the road was closed what are they supposed to do? Just stop dead in their tracks and walk to the nearest town until conditions improve? I am a truck driver and I can tell you have no idea how the trucking industry works. You gripe and complain about this and that in regards to trucks, and I’ll bet you’d be the first one to gripe and complain when you go to the store and there isnt any food on the shelf for you or your family. It all goes hand in hand. In order to bring you the good, WE, have to drive in unfavorable conditions. I don’t think the driver that jackknifed really wanted to jackknife, or did it on purpose, heck he probably didn’t really even want to be driving at that moment in time, but because its our job its what we must do. Without trucks America stops!
Well-loved. Like or Dislike: 40 6
This is a classic response whenever anyone challenges commercial trucking company’s rein in their business practices with restricting drivers/driving of any type.
I do know how the industry works Garrett. I understand the law regarding trucking very well, as do I understand how commercial trucking companies operate.
And I tell you what. NOONE has any reason to gripe about being caught unawares of the potential for seriously nasty weather being likely during this time period. Modern society has taught us to be an instant gratification citizenry, and if we can’t get our favorite brand of soda pop at every single store anytime we howl. I’m telling you Garrett I’m a proponent of letting these mouth breeders suffer for 48 hours, rather than ensuring that all big rigs be allowed to drive all over no matter what the weather (and more importantly ROAD) conditions are.
We will all survive 48 hours without every last little product that truckers deliver. Commercial trucks, and trucking companies need to have a law that makes them Stay the hel! off the road during this type of weather. There is zero justification that just because “the roads are open” that all commercial trucks need to be on the road.
This semi in question was EMPTY and not delivering ANYTHING that is desperately needed at the time of the accident. There is zERO reason for him to have been driving during that time.
America NEEDS to stop during these times of bad weather for a small amount of time during nasty driving conditions. Until a law is put in place to require commercial trucks off the road first, so that passenger traffic may safely navigate to their homes, the entire public is at serious risk from these unscrupulous businesses.
Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: 9 19
Maybe that truck driver was going home and ended up in the storm as it hit. He may have been empty returning to dispatch for another load and home.
Don’t jump to conclusions as you were not there and do not know the whole story.
Like or Dislike: 11 3
Precisely Montec. In my scenario, I’d give Commercial trucks a 2 hour shutdown window in order to get to a home base or truckstop, or back to their passenger vehicle/home with enough advance warning that it was coming up, and to immediately cease hauling, and start heading back, in order to make it in before the shutdown window closes.
In my scenario, we would have released information at 8AM that morning, stating that by 10:30AM all commercial traffic must be off the roads, and that all commercial traffic must immediately head back to homebases before 10:30AM. In this scenario, it would provide time for them to get to their destination, or to a truck stop, to their home, or back to whereever they leave their rig.
Solves your issue.
Like or Dislike: 7 10
In my scenario, we’d all be living in a perfect world with pretty little butterflies, birds singing, and sweet fragrant flowers.
Like or Dislike: 4 1
Art Bell; Yes, charge the last person in line who crashed into the pileup with manslaughter. How dare that person, who could not see a foot in front of their face, run into 100 cars scattered all over the interstate highway in front of them.
But please do not even consider charges against the North Dakota DOT for not closing the interstate when the visibility reached 0 several hours before the accident.
Like or Dislike: 12 3
Yes, let’s blame the DOT because people don’t have enough sense to stay off of the roads on their own. What does No travel advised mean. What did people do before there were gates? People complain about government interference and then expect them to do their thinking for them. If you can’t see, maybe you shouldn,t be driving.
Like or Dislike: 8 5
The problem is that here in the area there are some employers who require their employees to be at work regardless of the weather or travel warnings. To get many people off the road, the businesses should be forced to close.
Like or Dislike: 4 0
True I know of quite a few in the fargo moorhead area. And if those businesses close there employee’s dont get paid either. So it hurts those that need the money to afford the 130k+ homes that are only available in the are for there families.
Like or Dislike: 1 1
In a case like that, the interstates should have been closed. However when it happens during the business day, they should allow local traffic to drive home. Suspend all commercial vehicle traffic right away, and state that only mandatory passenger vehicle traffic to/from work & home would be permissible.
Like or Dislike: 7 4
That would include the reporters/TV crews that were about to orgasm to be the first one to get to the crash scene and be the first to report. Lets make reporters stay off the roads as well. We can still get the news relayed to the media by the emergency officials. KFGO was pathetic at trying to get to the crash scene first.
Commercial vehicles are the menace on the roads? The guy that got killed was a commercial driver that stopped to help people in cars. Was he being a menace by helping them? Yes, those drivers are REQUIRED to be out on the roads in those conditions so you complaining idiots can go buy crap at the store. You are not required to be on the roads when conditions are like that, so why are YOU out there? If those people could not see out their windshield due to snow why were THEY out there? For every commercial vehicle I see in the ditch there is 10 cars. Tells me who should and shouldnt be out there. No one should have been out there. I drove home in that weather and not one truck passed me, but car after car did and EVERY time, they passed me pulled right over in front of me and hit the brakes and went slower then I was already going. Whos the menace? A commercial vehicle was the first one to go lose control. SO…. that means the rest of idiots follow? Maybe the rest of them shouldnt have been driving so fast? Not following so close? Paying attention maybe? Not so interested in seeing a truck jack knifed? Well they all got a real good look at it didnt they? How about the 8 CAR accident on the west bound side? NOT truck, but CAR. Guess you shouldnt have slowed down to look at the accident on the east bound side.
Like or Dislike: 11 4
The charges are not because he was the last one to run into the accident. The charges are because he could not see a foot in front of his face and yet he was driving. There was already a accident and this guy was outside helping people that were already hurt and this idiot comes along and runs into him. Those damn menacing truck drivers out helping people in a accident. how dare they. You people have no clue. Get in your car and drive no matter what, blame the truck drivers. I do always like seeing you idiots pass me them 2 miles up the road you are in the ditch. Puts a big smile on me face as I drive by and wave.
Like or Dislike: 5 5
So close the interstate to trucks, but let local traffic drive? How about me driving a commercial vehicle? I live in Fargo, but I am not allowed to drive home? You make no sense.
Like or Dislike: 4 6
No Rob. You would not have been out in the FIRST place if that law was in effect. If there was a notice put out that within 2 hours all commercial operations must be shut down, and a statewide alert was broadcast across TV/radio notifying all citizens of this upcoming shutdown, it would allow you time to either get back to your homebase and/or drive to your home BEFORE the shutdown on commercial operations took place.
It really isn’t that hard to comprehend how it might work.
Unless you are just intentionally trying to be difficult.
Like or Dislike: 2 4
Bio, not many people watch tv while driving or @ work. And most drivers now are listening to XM radio or there portible media like an Ipot or some other MP3 player or CD’s in there car not radio stations. So what you promote there more then likely will only be recieved by those sitting @ home or by the few on the road. The majority will not hear that alert.
If there is a requirement to monitor media sources for updating road news, I’m sure they’ll figure out a way.
So now I hear you making another excuse for these guys. Tell me… when the announce Interstate road closings… how do these same guys figure that out? Are they driving down the road and totally caught by surprise by a sign or gate closing the road?
So in other words, they are only in touch with the rest of the world “when it suits them”, or when their internet radio can connect?
There are many ways they will find out. They all have cellphones. They all have CB as you have hinted at before….
The word will spread. Especially once the law has gone into effect, and other fellow truckers are passing the word.
Once again. Another attempt at throwing up false reasons on how “it just won’t work”.
Like or Dislike: 3 6
My point about the radio was towards everyone not just Commercial drivers. But the law should not single them out should be for everyone.
This was a tragic accident in tough road conditions. Most CDl drivers are very professional. When Im traveling in tough conditions, I usually like to put myself behind one of those professional drivers, this make me feel safe. My problem is with those jerks in the SUVs ripping by me. I have one too, but I know my car travels much better on the ice, look at the roll-overs, they are usually an SUV. Four wheel drive does not give you wings on the ice.
Like or Dislike: 14 1
WITHOUT TRUCKS AMERICA STOPS! You ignorant/arrogant people remember that next time you go to the store to buy your groceries and the shelves are bare. Stores for instance, are supplied on a daily basis, they don’t have stock piles of product in the back to last them a week. Something a lot of you folks don’t understand or realize, if every truck in this USA were to pull over and stop all at once for a full complete 24 hrs, this country would be brought to its knees.
Half of you people have never even seen the inside of a semi-truck, yet you criticize our job. Live one day with us behind that wheel and you will see how much we go through each minute of the day.
Like or Dislike: 9 8
My grandfather drove semi for more then the 29yrs I’ve been alive. I’ve ridden with him during the summer and xmas break from school when I was younger. I learned alot from him doing that. The fact that I had a CB in all my cars till a couple years ago(changed cars and yet to afford a new setup).
The talk and chatter form alot is very very professional. I know not many trucks use them anymore but in conditions like this last storm I bet they all had them on. 80% of the truckers I have met or driven by or followed have been very good drivers.
Its the other 20% that most people remember and gripe about. IE: the transsystems drivers, and alot of Magnum drivers.
Like or Dislike: 3 7
Honestly I’d love to see what happens if all the trucks just pulled over and stopped for even just 4hrs. The cost of shipping by rail is more then trucks and will always be that way. Now if we were not so centralized and relied on local food sources we could make it but as centralized we are now, not so much.
Like or Dislike: 0 5
Pretty sure that America (or at least North Dakota) stops when the interstates are closed too…
Why doesn’t the trucking industry fight these illegal interstate closures!
We can’t have America stop! Fight the power!
Like or Dislike: 4 3
who said illegal interstate closures?
You are as overly sensitive as farmers who say that we can’t live without them.
It was an accident, why make more out of it?
I agree. Every time a person gets into a car or truck they must realize there is a relative risk involved. We sit in a metal box that is going 75 mph in between other metal boxes run by complete strangers, aim the cars in a straight line despite any weather conditions, then get shocked when something happens. Even the most responsible drivers can make split second decisions that can cost lives. These people knew the weather at hand, passed multiple open exits with the option to get off the icy, dangerous interstate and continued to drive blindly. Then there is a crash and we all talk about criminal charges? Well, let’s add on anytime anyone has ever missed a sign, an intersection, sped, had a headlight out, or tinted windows to the criminal list cuz those things MAY lead to an accident.
Seriously, ND lets old ladies who run people over with $20 fines then goes after everyone else for felonies or misdemeaners over accidents.
Like or Dislike: 0 0
The reason for charges is so that the insurance companies know which insurance company to go after for the damage. It makes no sense to charge someone for what clearly was an accident, who are we going to charge next GOD for making too strong of winds or snow and ice. People get a clue.
The insurance companies are salivating over this so they don’t have to pay out of their pocket and can go after the driver of the semi and his insurance. The police are making it easier for the insurance companies, they must be in their back pocket.
Like or Dislike: 3 1
your statment is not true- citations arent issued to place blame- they are issued for an offense- can the insurance companies use it? sure- does it mark it in stone who’s fault it is? absolutely not. Just because I got a citation and you didnt- I got the citation for what I did….not what you did, or not what you DIDNT do. You can not get a ticket and still be at fault. Or you can get a ticket and be only partially at fault. That is what the crash report does. As with most of the world, its not as black and white as you put it.
Like or Dislike: 0 1
From what I have heard (that is a scary way to start a comment), the accident started with a semi jackknifing. What I have read implies that there was no other vehicle invovled with that part of the accident. Then, as vehicles stopped, they started running into each other.
I have always been taught that it is ALWAYS your responsibility to be able to stop or avoid others and that rear-ending anyone under any conditions will result in you being considered mainly at fault (because you didn’t have control of your vehicle).
With that thinking, the driver most in the clear on this accidnet would be the one in front. He lost control of his vehicle but had the good fortune of not hitting anyone. If it weren’t for the fact that there were others out driving unsafely, no accident would have occured.
Like or Dislike: 6 0
Well… A trial is supposed to be the place where somebody’s culpability gets sorted out. The thing is that just being tried is so much of a hardship, even if you’re found not guilty.
The argument is that it was negligent just to be out there, and I understand it. I think that I’d be hard to convince that doing something that at least 100 other people (not to mention everybody headed the other way who made it just fine) were doing is “negligent”. Is that right? I wouldn’t know until I heard the testimony.
Like or Dislike: 2 0
I didn’t see anything in the article about it being the initial semi driver who would be charged…is this information somewhere else? Wouldn’t charges be more likely levelled against the car that hit the man? Perhaps they were driving recklessly for the situation. Actually, I didn’t see anything about them charging anyone in relations to Balk’s death, so it could be other drivers being charged for other things, right?
Like or Dislike: 1 0
Bio, the point is there should not have been anyone on a interstate when there is zero visibilty. CMV or NON_CMV. It makes no difference what you drive. The person that run into the guy helping others should be charged. He was driving to fast and not paying attention. The Werner Ent./Walmart driver that started it all should be charged with reckless driving. He was the first one to lose control, but that does not give everyone else a reason to run into each other. If everyone had been driving for conditions behind him they would not have run into anybody else. The Werner driver lost control, the semi behind him went in the ditch instead of hitting the car in front of him. Sounds like a very smart choice in a very short time period to make that call. Sounds to me like that is a very professional driver. But since he was a CMV driver he must be a menace in your eyes BIo. Who is being difficult. Of all accidents involving a CMV 70 percent are caused my NON CMV. Who is the menace?………
Like or Dislike: 2 1
The only reason trucks are out on the roads in those conditions is because the consumer yells and screams when the things they want are not in the store. How many people would have been complaining had they gone to the store during the storm and the things they wanted were not in stock? Do you think everything in the store comes in weeks or even days ahead of time? No, maybe one day ahead of time.
People do like to talk about shipping by rail. Are the railroad tracks going to west acres? McDonalds? Your buisness? Warehouses? Grocery stores? Do they go anywhere near anything?
Like or Dislike: 0 2
Bio, How many truck were ticketed for being on the interstate AFTER it was closed? I did not here of any, not saying there wasnt any, but never heard of any. I heard of a many cars law inforcement had to go rescue. How about the guy that was pulled over on I-94 in Minnesota for doing 86mph on the interstate AFTER it was Closed. All you have complained about is truck drivers. You are stuck on truck drivers being the only ones in the wrong here. They are not. There are plenty of bad truck drivers, but there is a lot more bad care drivers.
Trucks..CMV’s …the root to all evil. I think we should ban then completely. We should just drive to the farm in MN and pick up our own milk, carpool to the sea ports and pick up everything else we live with that is made in china. Yup. Lets ban em. Or we could stop trying to justify driving in a blizzard….nah….that would require taking responsibility for ourselves. It is WAY easier to put the blame on someone else. >:O
Don’t worry, they wouldn’ t throw the book at a REAL accident. After all, the Mustafic brothers DELIBERATELY caused 37 “accidents” and they only got 30 days and $600 in restitution.
Like or Dislike: 3 0
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