Shortly after a deadly incident along local Interstate 17 in North Phoenix, a whistleblower has come forward and alleged an accident was ‘bound to happen’.
The rollover accident that occurred earlier in August involved a tanker truck, shutting down parts of the highway for several hours as crews raced to remove hot asphalt oil from the crash. One whistleblower claims the accident, which claimed the life of the tanker truck driver, might have been avoided altogether.
Preliminary investigators reported driver fatigue was likely the cause of the crash. Witnesses in the area noted the truck was swerving along the road moments before the fatal incident. Investigators found various road signs the driver had knocked down before ultimately crashing into a pole.
A coworker from Cactus Transport who personally knew the tanker truck driver told reporters, “The first thing that went through my mind was it was bound to happen. It was coming any day.” The man went on to claim that from the moment he began working for the company, he was pressured to work beyond legal restraints and through break periods.
The whistleblower went on to add, “It’s very dangerous to have people that tired working around that kind of stuff. The hours that they give these guys, they don’t give them rest time. They want them to stop one job, get ready to go to the next and work all that day without any kind of breaks or rests.”
Incidents like what occurred on Interstate 17 are important reminders why whistleblowers need to exist. Many of these individuals fear stepping forward will result in their own detriment, reporting that threatens their very livelihood.
Preventable accidents force the question, Are we doing enough to encourage whistleblowers? Fostering a more positive stance on whistleblowers could prevent tragic fatalities and improve work conditions.
Original story reported by AZ Family.