Trooper, trucker say driver behavior responsible for U.S. 30 crashes

Orange barrels block a broken guard rail along U.S. 30 at the site of a deadly crash.

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – After a deadly crash on U.S. 30 Thursday night, conversations continued about the deadly corridor.

NewsChannel 15 went looking for answers from a state trooper and trucker about why the crashes keep happening.

“Each crash is unique on its own standing, but at the end of the day, they are caused by driver behavior,” Indiana State Police Sgt. Ron Galaviz said.

Most drivers are used to traffic lights in close proximtiy to each other and intersections with blind corners, but when those exist on a stretch of road that is treated like an interstate, lives are put at risk.

“We do see interstate speeds,” Galaviz added. “It’s not unusual to see traffic running 80, 90 plus.”

Trucker John Allen Eppley has a lot of experience on U-S 30. He sees a combination of issues at play… the design of the road, as well as inexperienced and tired truckers driving it.

He’s most passionate about the lack of knowledge about semi trucks though.

“It’s not like we’re going to be able to just do what you can do,” Eppley explains.

He said the crashes will continue if the blaming continues instead of understanding what happens behind the wheel of a semi.

“You can put stop lights along every intersection down 30, you can make the speed limit 10 mph, we’re still going to have accidents until the people get educated on what’s going on,” he added.

Police said truckers have to be aware, just like other drivers.

“It’s not just the safety of us in our own vehicle we need to be driving relative to the safety of everyone else sharing the road with us.”

NewsChannel 15’s Brett Thomas took a close look at the idea of turning U.S. 30 in a special report. You can watch that here.