SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Noel Wurst, Liz McMillan, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente

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U.S. Department of Transportation Declares Tennessee Truck Driver and His Company to be Imminent Hazards to the Public

Ricky L. Hatfield and his company, Hatfield Trucking, ordered to immediately cease operations

WASHINGTON, Feb. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has declared Tenn.-licensed truck driver, Ricky L. Hatfield, and his Tazewell, Tenn.-based company, Hatfield Trucking, USDOT No. 2385057, to be imminent hazards to public safety and has ordered both the driver and the company to immediately cease operations.  Hatfield was served the federal orders on Jan. 22, 2014.

"Safety is our highest priority, and that includes every motor carrier, big or small, along with all other drivers on the road," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.  "We will not tolerate illegal and unsafe behavior by commercial drivers."

On November 19, 2013, Hatfield was operating a tractor-trailer on Interstate 81 in Franklin County, Penn. when he crossed onto the highway shoulder, collided with a car, and fatally struck two pedestrians.  After then colliding with a dump truck, Hatfield's tractor-trailer overturned across the Interstate 81 northbound lanes.  Hatfield fled the scene, but was later apprehended hiding behind a nearby building.  Franklin County law enforcement officers charged Hatfield with driving while intoxicated, reckless driving, aggravated assault by a vehicle, and failure to stop at an accident involving death or personal injury, as well as other charges.  

In 2009, Hatfield was convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol in Utah.  During that incident, Hatfield also attempted to flee from the scene. 

"Interstate truck and bus companies and their drivers should have no doubt that we will vigorously enforce all federal safety regulations to the fullest extent possible by law," said FMCSA Administrator Anne S. Ferro.  "Carriers and drivers who flout the safety rules put the public at risk and will be shut down."

The imminent hazard out-of-service order announced today applies to Hatfield individually as a Commercial Driver's License holder and to all vehicles owned or operated by Hatfield Trucking.  Hatfield is currently in the custody of Franklin County law enforcement.

A copy of the imminent hazard out-of-service order can be viewed at http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov

SOURCE Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

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