Top 5 Troubling Trucking Trends Likely To Continue In 2019: #4 Violence On-The-Rise
Little Rock, Arkansas – If you are an avid reader or viewer of Transportation Nation Network (TNN), you are well aware that we follow trucking news and industry trends as closely as any. As we head into a new year, we’ve identified 5 trends from 2018 that we think are likely to continue through 2019.
Here is the number 4 troubling trucking trend we expect to continue in 2019.
#4: Violence On-The-Rise
TNN has been highlighting a disturbing trend of violence throughout 2018. We have led the way in covering many stories most of the establishment trucking media won’t even consider reporting. Here are some of the stories that generated the most attention in 2018.
Truckers Being Targeted
Viewers and readers will remember the murder of 25-year-old Karmeshia Taylor who was found covered in blood in the sleeper of her rig at the Mardi Gras Truck Stop in New Orleans. This murder remains unsolved.
In a similar instance this year, Missouri truck driver Amos Phillips was sleeping in the cab of his truck at TP Truck Stop in Fort Hall, Idaho, when he was awakened in the middle of the night by an intruder who had broken his way into the truck to rob Mr. Phillips.
Phillips was beaten badly and barely escaped with his life. He will likely never be able to truck again due to the gruesome and debilitating injuries he suffered.
His attacker Stormy Ray Adakai, 23, was indicted on one count of assault resulting in serious bodily injury. He faces up to 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and up to three years of supervised release. However, Phillips recently lashed out at prosecutors for not filing additional charges.
More outrage ensued when we reported on the stabbing death of Orlando, Florida truck driver, 42-year-old Frankie Washington. He was murdered after his rig broke down and his trucking company made lodging accommodations for him. Police reported he was stabbed and left for dead on a sidewalk near a convenience store in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma about a mile away from his hotel.
In an exclusive interview with the lead detective on the case about a month after the murder, TNN discovered police are having a very difficult time identifying a probable suspect. No one has come forward with any substantial information and the case remains far from solved.
On the same day we first reported on the murder of Washington, we also first reported on the murder of 42-year-old truck driver Kevin Johnson of Floyd County, Kentucky. He was shot dead near his rig on a residential street in Flowerfield Township, Michigan.
Police narrowed in on three suspects quickly and charged them each with murder. They are each expected to go on trial in 2019.
Trucker On Trucker Shootings
It seems tempers are running a bit hotter and fuses are a little shorter these days at truck stops. TNN has reported on quite a few truck stop shootings this year. The most common reasons for driver disagreements that escalated into shootings were fights at the fuel island and parking space squabbles.
The parking shortage is resulting in truckers have to park in too many unsafe areas. Plus, truckers are rushed and increasingly now frustrated more than ever due to HOS rules, ELD implementation, distracted drivers, disrespect by shippers/receivers, and mind-numbing traffic and congestion, just to name a few reasons. Why would we have any basis to believe that these conditions mentioned above will improve in 2019? Please be careful out there and try to live by the golden rule. We all want to get home safely.