FMCSA issues 'imminent hazard' shutdown order to driver after fatal crash

Updated Jun 13, 2021
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A Mexican driver has effectively been shut down by the federal government following a fatal crash after which he failed several alcohol-related tests.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration declared Cecilio Eliut Camacho-Montoya to be an imminent hazard to public safety. The order prohibits him from operating any commercial motor vehicle in the United States. Camacho-Montoya was served the federal order Wednesday, June 9.

According to the FMCSA, on May 19,  Camacho-Montoya was driving on Highway 55 in Eagle, Idaho, when, according to witnesses, he failed to stop for a red traffic light at the intersection of Highways 55 and 44.  Camacho-Montoya’s truck crashed into another vehicle fatally injuring its driver.

Following the crash, Camacho-Montoya agreed to submit to three field sobriety tests administered at the scene by the Idaho State Police. He failed all three. He subsequently agreed at the crash scene to two breathalyzer tests. The first test sample showed a breath alcohol content of 0.222; the second, 0.214. About four hours after the crash, at the Ada County Jail, Camacho-Montoya tested at 0.080, with a fourth test showing at 0.078.  

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Possessing an alcohol concentration of greater than 0.04 while operating a commercial vehicle weighing more than 26,001 pounds and requiring a commercial driver's license is a violation of federal safety regulations. 

The State of Idaho has charged Camacho-Montoya with felony aggravated driving under the influence and felony vehicle manslaughter.

An investigation by the FMCSA found Camacho-Montoya, in the days leading up to the crash, on multiple occasions, had falsified his records of duty status and had exceeded the allowable on-duty driving hours permitted by federal regulations.  

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FMCSA’s imminent hazard out-of-service order states that Camacho-Montoya's "disregard for the safety of the motoring public … substantially increases the likelihood of serious injury or death to you and motoring public if not discontinued immediately.”

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Failing to comply with the provisions of the federal imminent hazard order may result in civil penalties of up to $3,268 for each violation.  Knowing and/or willful violations may result in criminal penalties. 

Camacho-Montoya may not operate a commercial motor vehicle in the United States until such time he successfully completes the statutorily required return-to-duty process overseen by a substance abuse professional.