Driver involved in crash killing 6 deemed 'imminent hazard to pu - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Truck driver involved in I-75 crash called 'hazard to public safety'

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UPDATE: A federal agency calls the truck driver an “imminent hazard to public safety” after he failed to stop before crashing into eight vehicles, killing six people on Interstate 75 last month.

The news comes just days after one of the crash survivors filed a lawsuit against Benjamin Brewer and the company he was working for.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has ordered Kentucky-licensed truck driver Benjamin Brewer not to operate any commercial motor vehicle in interstate commerce following his involvement in a nine-vehicle, six fatality crash that occurred June 25, along Interstate 75 near the Ooltewah exit.

Brewer was served the federal order on July 19 and his commercial driver's license was revoked.

Federal investigators say Brewer falsified his driver's log in the days leading up to the crash. He reported he had been off-duty from June 15 - June 25, but the vehicle tracking system shows Brewer was on-duty and driving on June 22, 23, and 24.

Brewer’s application for employment dated June 16 required him to list all accidents and traffic convictions occurring in the previous three years. Instead, he omitted a June 2013 crash and a January 2015 citation for speeding 16 to 20 miles-per-hour above the limit, according to a released statement from the Safety Administration.

In May 2015, Brewer tested positive for controlled substances following a court-order controlled substances test.

The Safety Administration’s order comes a couple days after crash survivor Ryan Humphries filed a $10 million lawsuit against Brewer and his employer. 

Humphries survived the crash and shared his story with Channel 3.

"I kind of stopped for a second, and then I remember waking up in the back of the ambulance," he said.

Humphries suffered a severe head injury, broken arm, 3rd degree burns on his heel and dozens of scratches and bruises.

"I want to know why he was on the Interstate and why he was driving," Humphries said, "He shouldn't have been behind the wheel."

The lawsuit says Brewer was speeding, failed to control his truck and is responsible for all of the injuries caused by the crash.

It also questions the company's judgement in hiring Brewer, saying Cool Runnings Express "failed to exercise reasonable and ordinary care in its decision to hire the defendant."

Humphries is still not able to return to work and he faces several more surgeries, but he continues to thank the first responders for their work.

"I probably wouldn't be here if it hadn't been for them," Humphries said.

So far no other lawsuits have been filed against Brewer or his employer. 
Chattanooga police are still in charge of the investigation and say the driver's most recent toxicology results -- taken the day of the crash --are not back yet.
Those results will help determine if Brewer will face criminal charges. 

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