A Windsor, Ontario, family has expressed outrage about the size of the fine issued to a truck driver following a four-vehicle fatal crash in February.
— Teresinha Medeiros (@tmedeiros800) December 12, 2017
Thirty-one year old truck driver Dinesh Kumar pled guilty to charges of reckless driving and was issued a $1200 fine in a Provincial Offences court on December 12.
Trucker Failed To Stop For Slowed Traffic, Causing Three Truck, One SUV Crash
The charges stemmed from a crash that happened in Windsor just after 4 p.m. on February 7, 2017 on westbound Highway 401 at the Todd Lane underpass. Foggy conditions made visibility poor at the time of the crash.
Police say that traffic had come to a complete standstill on Highway 401 when Kumar, who was hauling plastic food containers to Texas, failed to stop or slow and crashed into an Oldsmobile Bravada, sandwiching the SUV into another semi truck. One other semi truck was also involved in the crash.
— CBC Windsor (@CBCWindsor) May 4, 2017
The driver of the Bravada, nineteen year old Nicole Vetor, died at the scene.
One of the truck drivers suffered minor injuries in the crash.
Family Angered By Fine Issued To Truck Driver
According to reports, Kumar’s truck was traveling at speeds of over 60 m.p.h. at the time of the crash. He is said to have swerved to avoid the Bravada but wound up hitting the SUV with his trailer. He told the court “I fully tried my best to stop myself.” Kumar’s lawyer told the court that his client had missed four signs warning drivers of the slowed traffic ahead.
In spite of the fact that Kumar apologized to Vetor’s family in court, Vetor’s mother Nanette Vetor could not contain her anger and yelled at Kumar, “You killed my daughter and you’re paying $1,200!”
Vetor’s sister Jaime echoed her mother’s sentiments in her victim statement: “I think the Ministry of Transportation is helping these truck drivers kill our families.”
In late October, the Ontario Provincial Police warned “inattentive” truckers that they are “on notice” following a series of fatal crashes that occurred over the early spring and summer on Highway 401. OPP Commissioner J.V.N. Hawkes warned in a press conference that “Many, many truck drivers are some of the safest drivers we have on the highway. It is those truck drivers that are driving inattentively and are distracted drivers (that are a danger) and they are driving in essence a time bomb that is traveling down the highway. Those are the guys that we need to get.”