Truck Drivers React to Heat Related Death
“I like the heat even though I’m from Maine. Yesterday it was hot around 100 here, if you stay out too long I suppose it could be.”
While not all truck drivers are affected by Laredo’s 100 degree weather, emergency officials believe the heat did play a factor in the death of Carey Jay Williams.
It was at one of these rest stops that ambulances picked him up and rushed him to a local hospital where he later died.
Driver William Sullavitz is from New Mexico and says he’s used to this climate, but says laws in some states and company policies make it difficult to keep cool.
“They choose to favor a pet over the welfare of a truck driver. We are not to run our trucks in an idle position while waiting for a load in a truck stop which affects safety,” says Sullavitz.
“I was wondering when this would happen, if it was a cause in this gentleman's death.”
Other drivers say some companies even limit the amount of time one can leave theit truck running before turning it off, and that includes some air condition units as well.
“Do you hear a lot of truck drivers talk about it? Yeah, especially when you are unloading. It adds another 5 to 20 degrees.”
The heat they say definitely is a danger especially when many of these drivers are used to cooler weather.
“Ah, it’s way hotter than back home.”
“There has to be something done about it, and it has to be done quickly, and it doesn’t matter where you're from. We all suffer from heat related problems.”