According to reports, the crash happened on the New Jersey Turnpike on June 7 around 1 a.m. Initial reports indicate that the tractor-trailer driver did not notice that traffic had slowed and tried to swerve to avoid the limo bus, but it was too late. The semi struck the limo, causing it to rollover. The driver of the limo told reporters he remembers stopping the limo and then being upside down.
Four men were injured in the truck accident, including Morgan, and a passenger in the limo bus was killed. Morgan reportedly suffered several broken bones but is now in critical but stable condition. The injuries sustained by the other passengers were unknown, but the driver of the limo reportedly suffered only bruises.
Four additional vehicles were involved in the accident, but none of those drivers or passengers were injured, according to authorities. Alcohol is not believe to be a factor in the crash, but the driver of the semi has been accused of being awake for more than 24 hours at the time of the crash, according to a criminal complaint.
The man was driving a Wal-mart truck, and a spokesperson for the company said that they believed that the driver operated within the confines of the federal hours of service regulation, which limits drivers to 11 hours of driving per every 14-hour period. Drivers must also have 10 hours of rest between the driving periods.
This incident shows how serious truck accidents can be and how important it is that drivers follow the proper safety procedures to ensure they are not overtired and can give the task of driving such a large vehicle their full attention. If the driver is found to have violated the federal regulations, civil suits may also be forthcoming in addition to criminal charges.
Source: CNN, “Police: Driver charged in Tracy Morgan crash was awake 24 hours” Kevin Conlon and Doug Ganley, Jun. 09, 2014