Regulators: Driver's Fatigue Caused Crash That Injured Tracy Morgan
Black Enterprise Magazine July/August 2018 Issue

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According to reports, federal regulators have found that the truck driver’s fatigue likely caused the June 2014 crash that killed comedian James McNair and seriously injured comedian Tracy Morgan in New Jersey.

[Related: Comedian Tracy Morgan Speaks About Car Accident]

Finishing months of investigation, the NTSB released the probable cause and made nine new safety recommendations in a Tuesday morning board meeting in Washington, D.C.

Kevin Roper, a truck driver for Wal-Mart who caused the accident, was awake for more than 28 consecutive hours before the crash, having driven 12 hours in his personal vehicle before he started his job on the morning of June 6, the National Transportation Safety Board indicated.

The NTSB added that McNair, Morgan, and others in the passenger compartment of the limo van weren’t wearing seat belts or using properly adjusted head restraints, a factor that contributed to the severity of their injuries.

Roper rear-ended the group’s limo van on the New Jersey Turnpike June 7 of last year, killing McNair and injuring seven other passengers, including Morgan. The NTSB also found that Roper was driving over the speed limit in a work zone—at 65 mph where the limit was 45 mph—and he failed to brake in time for slow-moving traffic ahead of him, including the limo van.

After the accident, Morgan sued Wal-Mart and settled the case for an undisclosed amount. McNaire’s children will receive $10 million from the family’s settlement as well.

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Janell Hazelwood

Janell Hazelwood is associate managing editor at Black Enterprise, managing content across core areas of Money, Career, Small Business and Technology. She is also a featured blogger with My Two Cents, providing insights on branding, millennial career development, employment trends and leadership. She was previously a content producer and copy editor for Black Enterprise magazine, working across several editorial sections. The Hampton University graduate got her start in the newspaper industry, having worked for companies including The New York Times and Scripps Howard News Service. Her works and insights have appeared on The Huffington Post, MadameNoire, E!Online, Brazen Careerist, CBS News, and Arise TV.