Regulators say an oversized load did not have the proper permit when the rig snagged an Interstate 35 bridge beam in a deadly Central Texas wreck.
The tractor-trailer lacked the proper permit, the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles said on March 27. Special permits are needed for oversized loads so the DMV can provide drivers with safe routes.
“The motor carrier that struck the bridge did not have the legally required permit to carry an overweight load,” DMV spokesman Adam Shaivitz told the Austin American-Statesman.
Clark Brandon Davis, of Arlington, was killed. Rig driver Valentin Martinez and two other people were injured.
No citations were immediately issued in the March 26 accident. Lares Trucking, the small, two-truck company whose rig struck the overhead beam, primarily hauls general freight, building materials, logs, poles and lumber, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
According to federal records, Lares Trucking underwent five random inspections in the past two years, and officials twice found defects significant enough to pull those trucks out of service. Those issues were for a defective “brake warning device” and for a cracked, loose or sagging frame.
Owner Julian Lares told KVUE-TV that he didn’t know the bridge couldn’t be safely passed.
“It’s a new bridge. Why don’t they construct it more high?” Lares said.
Three advisory signs were posted indicating clearance of 13 feet, 6 inches, according to Department of Public Safety officials. They estimated the load was 14 feet, 7 inches.
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