South Carolina truck driver placed out of service by FMCSA

A South Carolina truck driver has been placed out of service following a fatal crash in which he is said to have been involved in February.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has declared Stevie Wolfe Breland an imminent hazard to public safety and has ordered him not to operate any commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce.  The declaration follows his involvement in a fatal crash that occurred last month along Interstate 77 in Chester County, South Carolina.

A statement from the FMCSA explains:

On Feb. 8, at about 3:10 a.m. EST, a truck operated by Breland struck the rear of a Ford Explorer, causing that vehicle to run off the roadway and overturn, fatally injuring one of the occupants.

After striking the Explorer, Breland fled the scene of the crash. He later discarded the front bumper of his truck before completing the delivery of an intermodal shipping container to Jonesville, North Carolina.  The following day, Breland returned to his employer’s terminal in Charleston, South Carolina and reported that his truck had struck a deer; he subsequently had the front bumper of his truck repaired.

An investigation by South Carolina authorities and the FMCSA found that on the day of the fatal crash, Breland had falsified his record-of-duty status to show that he had been in Charleston, when in fact he was in Chester County, South Carolina.  On Feb. 11, South Carolina law enforcement personnel identified Breland as the hit-and-run driver involved in the fatal crash.

Breland had been involved in two additional crashes while operating a commercial motor vehicle in the preceding eight months. In November 2015, Breland made an improper lane change and struck the rear of a vehicle on Interstate 26 in North Charleston, and in July 2015, Breland failed to slow for stopped traffic on Interstate 77 near Mooresville, North Carolina, colliding into the rear of another vehicle.

FMCSA’s imminent hazard out-of-service order states that Breland’s “…continued operation of a commercial motor vehicle substantially increases the likelihood of serious injury or death to you and the motoring public.”