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(58,776 posts)
Wed May 15, 2024, 12:43 PM May 15

Whistleblower says DOT kept important truck safety info from the public

Whistleblower says DOT kept important truck safety info from the public
Families who lost loved ones in crashes with large trucks and people with national organizations are now calling for an investigation.

Perspective by Theresa Vargas
Metro columnist
May 15, 2024 at 12:23 p.m. EDT

As Quon Kwan tells it, he didn’t plan on becoming a whistleblower.

He had retired after a long career with the federal government, earned a master’s degree in divinity and moved into a senior living community in Maryland. At 75, he had few reasons to think about the job he once held as an engineer for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. ... Then, one day earlier this spring, Kwan received an email from a mother who lost two children in a crash that ended with her family’s car partially beneath a tractor-trailer.

Before I tell you what happened next and why it matters, you should know there is a term for those types of collisions in which vehicles and people end up under large trucks — “underride crashes.” If you are not familiar with that phrase, you are not alone. People who have lost loved ones to those types of crashes will tell you they weren’t familiar with it either, until they were all too familiar with it.

You should also know this: I have written about people (too many people) who have been killed on roads in the Washington region and the need for more measures to make streets safer nationwide, which is how I learned about Kwan. In the past month, he has provided a written statement to a government advisory committee and spoken to road safety advocates, offering information on a public safety issue that he says the U.S. Department of Transportation kept from the public.


By Theresa Vargas
Theresa Vargas is a local columnist for The Washington Post. Before coming to The Post, she worked at Newsday in New York. She has degrees from Stanford University and Columbia University School of Journalism. Twitter https://twitter.com/byTheresaVargas
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