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Semi Team Driver Dies After Being Ejected from Sleeper Berth

Kentucky Case Report: 09KY081
Release Date: May 27, 2010

The following report is the product of our Cooperative State partner and is presented here in its original unedited form from the state. The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the individual Cooperative State partner and do not necessarily reflect the views or policy of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.


In the fall of 2009, a husband-wife semi driver team traveled south on a four-lane interstate. They were driving a semi-tractor trailer loaded with air freight. It was nighttime; the husband was driving, and the wife was in the sleeper berth. There was an unoccupied car parked on the right shoulder. The husband crossed the fog line on the right, sideswiped the car, traveled through a guardrail, and down an embankment toward a road below the interstate. During the trajectory of the semi-tractor trailer, the unit jackknifed; the trailer detached from the semi then struck the semi, and both the husband and wife were ejected. The husband was found on the embankment, and the wife was found under the contents of the semi. A witness to the crash called emergency services. They arrived and transported the husband to the nearest trauma hospital. The coroner was contacted, and upon his arrival to the scene, declared the wife dead at the scene

Semi Team Driver Dies After Being Ejected from Sleeper Berth [PDF 367 KB]