Linn Co. Deputy Almost Hit by Semi during Stop

posted by WMT News/KCRG-TV9 - 

LINN COUNTY, Iowa (KCRG) Deputies at Linn County Sheriff's Office are reminding truck drivers to stay vigilant on the road.

That's after a driver nearly struck a deputy. TV9 received dashcam video of the incident that shows the driver nearly going off the road. The driver then admitted to the officer he was sleepy.

"Had the deputy been standing by the door the results would have been terrible,” Major Chad Colston said.

Colston said authorities received a lot of calls about semi, saying the driver swerved all over southbound I-380. So, dispatchers sent a deputy to the area.

"Waited for the vehicle to come by him because he knew he was in front of the semi,” Colston said. "They actually tested him for impaired driving."

On scene, the driver admitted he was a little sleepy. Instead of a citation, the deputy ordered some rest, which is fairly typical in these situations.

A lot of times they will tell you 'I haven't had rest and I'm tired. And I know I should have pulled over and get some rest,’” Colston said.

And those with truck drivers in the family know those suggestions well."My dad was an over the road truck driver and my step dad was an over the road truck driver,” Yolynn Moloshy said. "If you start swerving and get tired pull over and sleep."

A federal mandate, passed last year, requires truck drivers to use electronic logging devices to monitor how long they're in a semi. The rule says drivers have to take a break after driving eight hours.

But the Federal Motor Safety Administration made some exceptions. The regulation doesn't apply to truckers hauling agriculture.

The semi that nearly hit a deputy was hauling livestock.

Authorities say, even it if it's not against the law, drivers should still get plenty of rest. It's also important to recognize the signs you're getting tired.

“They keep pushing on even though they know their body needs sleep,” Colston said.

Law enforcement also wants drivers to pull over in a safe place, like a rest stop or a gas station.

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