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Lack of tough measures result in deaths

Gregg Jones and Doug Swanson of The Dallas Morning News use a fatal 2004 truck accident near Dallas to illustrate many of the problems in the trucking industry. Miroslaw Jozwiak, a Polish immigrant, plowed the commercial truck he was driving into incoming traffic in 2004, killing 10 people, including three children. The investigation found that since interstate shipping was deregulated in the 1980s, the number of trucking and bus companies has soared from 230,000 in 1990 to more than 677,000 in 2004. "Competition among these companies has transformed the trucking industry into a magnet for immigrants, felons and others with poor employment prospects. It has also produced punishing conditions for truckers, many of whom are paid by the mile. " The political clout of the trucking lobby and of big retailers has helped block tougher laws to police the business. As a result, industry experts and watchdog groups say, untold legions of truckers work unsafe hours, or operate faulty equipment that inspectors fail to curb, or continue driving despite numerous traffic violations, or wipe out innocent people who try to share the road.

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