The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has ordered Lowell, Mass.-based Flavio Borges Prado, doing business as Golden Eagle Delivery, to immediately cease operations because of the company’s lack of inspection or maintenance accountability.
The company was put under investigation earlier this year after it failed to submit to a New Entrant Safety Audit required by federal regulations. FMCSA ordered Flavio to cease operations, but the order was rescinded when the carrier finally submitted to the audit.
While the investigation was underway, the parking brake on one of Flavio’s trucks failed, causing the vehicle to roll down a hill and collide with a residential housing structure. The incident injured the driver and caused significant damage to the property.
One month later, a second truck experienced a brake failure causing it to break down in a roadway travel lane. During the FMCSA’s investigation, it was discovered that the carrier was in violation of multiple safety regulations. These violations included failing to regularly inspect, maintain and repair vehicles or ensure that they met even minimum safety standards.
The company failed to require drivers to conduct pre- and post-trip vehicle inspections and submit reports of safety defects in order to make repairs. The carrier was also found to be dispatching vehicles with known safety defects that had been discovered during roadside inspections.
FMCSA inspected six of the carrier’s seven vehicles because the seventh had been in a crash and was inoperable at the time. Out-of-service violations were discovered in every vehicle, including worn, leaking, welded or missing brake, steering and suspension components. Lastly, during the investigation the carrier was unable to produce records demonstrating that it had a vehicle maintenance program of any kind.
In its Imminent Hazard out-of-service order, FMCSA characterized Flavio Borges Prado’s ignorance of safety standards as “continual and blatant disregard,” going on to say that the continued operation of the carrier “substantially increases the risk of death of serious injury.”