Lenexa trucking company in fiery I-435 crash has dozens of violations, feds say

Posted at 3:26 PM, Aug 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-11 20:30:12-04

41 Action News took a closer look at the safety record for Alpha Transport. Police say a driver with that trucking company caused a multi-car crash on I-435 that critically injured one man.

According to a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration report, the company's rate of inspectors pulling drivers from the road is 15 percent, which is triple the national average. Alpha Transport's rate for having trucks pulled is double the national average, according to the FMCSA.

The federal agency told us trucks and drivers are only placed out of service if they pose an "imminent threat" on the road.

After one call to Alpha Transport and three to its attorney went unanswered, we went to the company's Lenexa headquarters.

The owner did not want to be shown on camera, but he told us their high numbers are a result of drivers forgetting to fill out their log books, which track how many hours they've driven. He said the company plans to institute a new electronic log system and added that they've already upgraded their trucks.

"We force our drivers, you know you need to follow the rules. Equipment-wise, we have gotten rid of all of our older fleets," Alpha Transport's owner added.

41 Action News also spoke with an instructor with Gear Monkey CDL Training about the FMCSA ratings. He told us if a company has a certain number of violations, the agency is more likely to flag them for inspection. That, of course, can lead to even more violations.

"They're going to check them a little bit more, because they're wanting them to get back down to where they need to be," CDL instructor John Williams explained.

Alpha Transport maintains it's doing everything it can to get its numbers down.

"Safety comes first for us," the owner said.

According to Alpha Transport, the driver involved in the wreck had 11 years of truck driving experience and no problems in the past. He was charged with failure to avoid a collision.