Here are the details of recent traffic accidents involving migrant farmworkers:
— Jan. 9, 2015 — Four farmworkers died when their van struck a semi-trailer in Fresno County, California. The director, who is not a contracted farm labor driver, had nine people in a van rated for only eight. The driver pleaded no contest in March to manslaughter, and the U.S. Department of Labor has moved to the repeal of the farm labor declaration of his employer, C. A. T. Employment Services. The company the lawyer keeps his client not to arrange employee transportation.
— Jan. 13, 2015 — Five employees were killed in San Joaquin County, California, when the van they were in went through a stop sign in the dense fog and was broadsided by a pick-up truck. Police say none of the drivers license. Although the farm labor contractor is not liable for the accident, the Ministry of Labour fined him for nothing transport violations in the same vineyard during her research.
— Feb. 3, 2015 — A migrant worker backed over and killed the other with a school bus outside an Indiantown, Florida, restaurant. Researchers from the Florida Highway Patrol say the employee jumped behind the wheel of the bus as the driver cannot see. He fled the scene but was later caught and charged.
— June 3, 2015 — Two were killed and 10 injured when a bus with H-2A workers do not stop and bumped into the back of a semi on Interstate 10 near Weimar, Texas. The bus with about 30 employees of Laredo to the tobacco fields of North Carolina. Police reports say that the driver, who died, not a commercial license.
— June 20, 2015 — Four workers, including a 16-year-old, died and five others were injured when the van they were in rolled in Merced County, California. The police says the employees came back from a day in the fields, if the unauthorized driver fell asleep, fell off the road and overcorrected. The six passengers who were unrestrained, in violation of California code — were ejected. The Ministry of Labour has sued the grower and the farm labor contractor, alleging that they “turned a blind eye” to unsafe transport practices.
— Aug. 12, 2015 — Twenty-two mainly Haitian migrant workers were injured , four of them seriously, when the bus carrying them home from Georgia ran off Interstate 10 west of Tallahassee, Florida, and rolled into a ditch. The bus, whose driver was operating on a suspended license, was carrying two fully charged, unsecured propane tanks. The authorities say that not only was the bus not properly registered or inspected, but that farm labor contractor GSH Labour administration had failed to purchase liability and workmen’s compensation insurance. According to a state investigator, owner: Gregorio Gonzalez told him, “I just don’t have the time to buy this insurance for the commencement of the harvest.” In an interview with AP, Gonzalez denied saying that. However, all workers’ compensation claims were denied. The state has a penalty of GSH $9,250 and says “refusing a request for renewal or application for a farm labor certificate.
— Sept. 1, 2015 State police say a 36-passenger bus with 49 people, was speeding when it ran off a road in Coffee County, Georgia , overturned and came to rest on its roof in a creek, injuring more than two dozen. Police say Jesus Rubio Nevarez was driving “too fast for the conditions.” In 1995, the International bus was the property of the EXISTING Outsourcing Solutions, of which the federal farm labor certification had expired in May 2014. Although the labor contractor described himself as a team leader for the grower, the Ministry of Labour revealed that the grower was not responsible. So far it is only the consequences of the accident were Nevarez, who was cited for speeding and “failure to maintain lane.” He paid about $317 in fines. Daysie Zepeda, 19, who fractured her left elbow in the crash, said neither she nor any of the other employees that they have spoken with the received compensation.
— Sept. 8, 2015 — 1995 International bus with 20 workers had drifted off a two-lane road and rolled onto its side in White County, Indiana . Of the 13 people injured, 10 reported to be “incapacity for work” injuries. The AP found that the bus owner had a history of alleged safety violations dating back to 2009. Data shows that the insurance on the bus had expired in January 2015. Neither the state nor the federal labour officials investigated the accident.
— Sept. 21, 2015 — Twenty-six workers were injured when a tractor-trailer behind their bus in the near Tarboro, North Carolina. Although it is not the bus drivers fault, he was indicted for not having a commercial driver’s license. The police said that the bus, which is owned by a federal labor contractor, also lacked insurance.
— Sept. 28, 2015 — Three women were killed and four others injured when their mini-bus, making a U-turn, was struck by a dump truck in McFarland, California. The women were on their way to work in a vineyard. Officials say driver Zenaida Quintero-Reyes, who was one of the people killed, had a valid license.
— Nov. 6, 2015 — Six Mexican workers were killed and seven others injured when a bus trip from Michigan to Texas, struck a overpass on the Interstate 40 north of Little Rock, Arkansas. Police say the driver Roberto Vasquez was tired; a DOL report, he said, “hit a bump and lost control.” An investigation determined that the farm labor contractor Vasquez Citrus & Hauling had failed to have the bus inspected, and with less than a quarter of the necessary insurance. The owner of the company, who do not respond to a call from the AP for comment, told investigators “he did not know that the worker’s compensation insurance does not cover the travel back to Mexico.”
— Dec. 1, 2015 — At least six people were injured when a of which 11 farmworkers failed to slow and hit another car from behind in Copperopolis, California. According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, the driver did not have a farm labor transport certificate. The DMV said the license was suspended, except in the course of the employment.”
— Jan. 27, 2016 — 1994 Blue Bird bus with 23 Haitian farmworkers went by means of a flashing light intersection in Belle Glade, Florida, and crashed into a pick-up truck. The police says the Haitian immigrants director, Elie Dupiche, did not stop to ensure that no other vehicles had entered the intersection. No one was seriously injured.
— May 13, 2016 — Three workers died when their pick-up crossing of the railway was hit by an Amtrak train in Madera County, California . The crossing is on private farmland, and the car was the property of Erickson Farms. Jim Erickson said the driver, a Mexican native, was with his company for more than 20 years and was like a son to me.”
— 18 June 2016 — Six immigrants, including a mother and her 5-year-old son, died when the van they were in hit another car and flipped several times on Interstate 95 in Caroline County, Virginia. Ten others, including the driver, were injured. The police said that the of the residents, all undocumented immigrants from Guatemala and Mexico, had just finished with the harvest of blueberries in North Carolina and were on our way to do the same in New Jersey. Driver Wenceslao Cruz-Marquez, who authorities say does not have a driver’s license, is charged with manslaughter. Investigations by the Labour and the National Transportation Safety Board is underway.
— July 2, 2016 — Four people, including a 4-year-old boy, died in 1979 Blue Bird school bus they were allegedly ran a flashing red light and collided with a tractor-trailer in St. Marks, Florida. Both vehicles burst into flames. The driver of the truck and three people in the bus died. Another 25 people were injured, including the bus driver Elie Dupiche, the same man involved in the Jan. 27 accident. Later that month, the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Administration ordered farm labor contractor Billy R. Evans immediately pull all of its vehicles from the road, he says, posed “an imminent risk of serious injury or death if your actions are not discontinued immediately.” Neither Evans, nor Dupiche responded to AP’s calls for comment.
— Aug. 11, 2016 — Six workers were injured when the school bus transporting caught fire on Highway 135 in Santa Barbara County, California. The California Highway Patrol, said that when the bus began to smoke, the driver slowed to about 5 km / h, and the 28 people on board began to jump. No citations were issued in that case. But the Ministry of Transport has issued 288 safety citations against the bus of the owner in the past two years, including seven for “Acute/Critical Violations” in inspections after the fire.