By on May 8, 2017

auction-crash

The elderly man who drove the SUV involved in a crash that resulted in three deaths at a Massachusetts auto auction last Wednesday hasn’t held valid driving credentials in several years. Apparently, the 76-year-old man — whose name remains withheld — had his license suspended in 2012 after numerous incidents a year earlier, including impeding traffic, missing inspection stickers, and a license plate violation. It was never reinstated. His driving record also shows seven other accidents dating back to 1987 and license suspensions on four separate occasions.

Lynnway Auto Auction released a statement after his driving history became public. “We were unaware of the change in status of the driver’s license until the police told us after the accident,” explained Lynnway president Jim Lamb. “When we hired him in 2010, he had a valid Massachusetts driver’s license. As he has had no issues while driving for Lynnway for the past seven years, we were surprised and upset to learn this development.” 

The driver issued a public apology in a television interview with WCVB-TV. “I didn’t want it to happen,” he said. “I’m not happy that it happened, and I’m sorry about it.”

“I want the families to know that I didn’t intentionally try and hurt anybody,” he said. “I tried very hard to miss everybody.”

Lynnway has been careful to state that it’s the responsibility of a driver to inform the company when the status of their license has changed. It also clarified that no driver is allowed to operate on the property unless they have a valid license. While federal and state regulations require employers to conduct driving record checks on potential employee drivers with a commercial license, one would have hoped Lynnway checked the driving history of its own employees before hiring them.

[Image: WCBV Channel 5]

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39 Comments on “Driver in Fatal Auction Crash Had Licence Suspended Since 2012, Issues Apology...”


  • avatar
    redmondjp

    He tried very hard to miss everybody? What an odd statement to say.

    My money is on pedal misapplication – he thought he was standing on the brake.

    • 0 avatar
      brn

      pedal misapplication happens all the time. In the service lane, we had someone do that once. He was so bad, he refused to believe his foot wasn’t on the brake. Luckily, the car wasn’t in gear, so the attendant was able to reach in and kill the engine.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    “I want the families to know that I didn’t intentionally try and hurt anybody,”

    That is by definition: manslaughter.

    “I tried very hard to miss everybody.”

    Incompetent fool.

  • avatar
    sirwired

    The initial reports say he tried very hard to avoid other –vehicles–, which had the side-effect of hitting people instead. If he was panicking (and no doubt he was), I can’t blame him for avoiding the largest objects coming up in the windshield, but let’s call a Spade a Spade here…

    I expect the end result of this tragedy will be this guy being given a suspended sentence on the condition he never again get behind the wheel of a car, and the auction company’s insurance will be paying out a very large amount of money. (Followed by the auction company going bankrupt unless they have a VERY large insurance policy and/or a VERY large amount of cash lying around.)

  • avatar
    GoHuskers

    Do any EDITORS exist at this site? In the title the word LICENCE is spelled incorrectly. DUH — try: LICENSE.

    • 0 avatar
      mikey

      Oops….Far be it from me to correct anybody’s spelling . In “Canadian English ” we only use the “S” when licence is used as a verb . For the most part TTAC generally uses American English …

      I guess Matt made an honest mistake ….Eh ?

    • 0 avatar
      newenthusiast

      Perhaps you are not aware (I wasn’t at first) that TTAC is based in Canada. This is the correct spelling. This site uses the American spelling or words as well, usually dependent on the writer.

    • 0 avatar
      Null Set

      Copy editing is clearly a thing of the past when it comes to internet, uh, journalism. Not just on this site, but on all of them. But TTAC has a knack for taking howlers to a new level. They are the Trumps of spelling. I propose a TTAC spelling disaster drinkng game. Who’s with me? A sure path to rehab!

  • avatar
    Jason Lombard

    Cue a very large civil suit in 3…2…1….

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    Hopefully he spends the rest of his life in prison, where his best friend will be a mouse.

  • avatar
    Pricha33

    How do the B&B feel about mandatory road tests for seniors?? Whenever I see these stories about piss poor driving skills , I can almost always guess senior behind the wheel. A personal friend struck by a car , driven by a little old lady that drove over a large curb and pinned her beneath her compact car, and lady says ” Oh maybe I pressed the wrong pedal ” … driving is a privilege not a right … I see these dangerous people driving oblivious to all around them everyday. Time for a change !!!

    • 0 avatar
      2manycars

      Idiot youngsters texting and playing games on their phones while driving are far more dangerous than seniors. Perhaps we should consider raising the driving age to 35 or 40. After all, if it saves just one life it is worth it!

      • 0 avatar
        SixspeedSi

        I disagree. Although many around my age have no excuse to be playing on their phones, I’ve personally seen more competent driving with distracted drivers than seniors. How many young “idiots” do you see hit the wrong pedal and kill three people?

        • 0 avatar
          Ryoku75

          Young idiots, while often impatient or distracted, at least still have good reflexes and awareness.

          Elders should be tested more often as many lack the reflexes needed for driving. That and I’m a bit tired of slowpoke Buicks.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      Pricha33 – that would not have helped in this case. The fellow already had a suspended driver’s licence.
      In BC there is mandatory driver retesting every two years once a person hits 80.
      I feel that there should be mandatory scheduled testing for everyone. Any profession that involves public safety has to meet annual competency requirements. Driving should be no different.

      • 0 avatar
        Kendahl

        Mandatory testing before every renewal of a driver’s license? That would make driver testing the biggest department in state government. Testing before renewal does make sense if the driver has had incidents like this guy.

    • 0 avatar
      wstarvingteacher

      Wondered how long it was going to be before someone painted all seniors with the same tar brush. This guy did not kill folks because he was old. He killed them because he was incompetent and had no license (licence) to legally drive. To this point in the comment section we have had readers telling Canadians how to write and others heaping on without reading the clarifying comments. Then we have another suggesting tests for seniors because they were driving when he was still crapping yellow. Personally I cannot do the things I used to do but doubt it’s age so much as the PD that arrived a few years ago. When I cannot, I won’t and if I lose my license I think there will be a moped in my future.

      Perhaps B&B is a misnomer. There are obviously some very talented readers here and I love reading their comments. Have been lurking for years but seldom feel the need to visit. Perhaps it’s time for another extended hiatus or perhaps just not read the comments. Oh well, time for my nap.

  • avatar
    mcs

    The driver is blaming the Jeep:

    “Then all of a sudden, the car by itself, just took off…somehow it just accelerated,” the driver told Boston 25 News.

    http://www.masslive.com/news/index.ssf/2017/05/driver_in_lynnway_auto_auction.html

  • avatar
    dwford

    The auction company can spin this how they want, but it is their responsibility to make sure they have licensed drivers working the lanes.

  • avatar
    NeilM

    I wonder how this guy got to work. Somebody dropped him off? I’m betting not — more likely he drove there with a suspended license.

  • avatar
    WrittenDescription

    Lynnway will soon find out that it needed to do rather more than passively wait for its employees to self-report changes in licensing status.

  • avatar
    jeoff

    When I detailed cars for a large dealership at an offsite garage, the garage owner’s elderly father was part of the caravan of cars that went from the dealership to the garage. The insurance company would not insure the old man anymore, but the garage owner wouldn’t tell his father he couldn’t drive, so they just wedged the car he was driving into the middle of the caravan and hoped for the best.

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    My old man is the same age as this guy – *sigh*

    Two years ago my dad blacked out while driving in Maryland. His car was totaled and my mom ended up hospitalized – luckily only bumps and bruises. Because it happened out of state, his license wasn’t pulled like it would have been here in Michigan.

    Instead of flying home like I wanted, my dad rented another car and finished the trip. And promptly went out and bought another vehicle.

    So far so good – no more accidents. But he does drive slowly now; and also gets angry if anyone passes him.

  • avatar
    Roberto Esponja

    My workplace conducts yearly driving record checks. It’s not an expensive thing. That auction company should have been doing that with its drivers.

  • avatar
    yankinwaoz

    My 97 year old aunt in Texas still has her DL. Even though she can’t turn her head, and has averaged at least 1 accident a year, they still let her drive.

    We finally convinced her to stop driving after her last accident landed her in the hospital for 3 months and send another victim to the hospital. That victim is now suing the shit out of my aunt.

    And she still has her car in her driveway.

    *sigh*.

  • avatar
    FAHRVERGNUGEN

    ATTENTION ALL EMPLOYERS – in most States you can run Motor Vehicle Reports on your employees to make sure that they have valid licenses, and find out how many points they have accumulated over what period. You will be held responsible for accidents caused by your employees – even if they are driving around on lunch break – since you probably have deeper pockets (and more insurance) than your staff will have.

    This should be followed even if you don’t have company cars – employees using their own vehicles may expect the company to cover their business-related use. And while your insurance company might ask for a drivers’ list at renewal, they normally don’t ask for lists when companies only get Hired and Non-Owned vehicle coverage – making the employer the gatekeeper.

    I tell this to ALL my clients whose Auto Liability coverage I arrange – as well as scheduling the Auto policy on their Umbrella policy – because there is NO NEED to get screwed up by a lack of diligence.

    Anyone need help? TM me…somehow…


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