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May 18, 2017

CHAMELEON CARRIERS * USA: TRUCKING CHANGE THEIR IDENTITIES

* Ohio - Unsafe trucking companies change identities to dodge inspections



--- It's an 18-wheel con game. Trucking companies with horrible safety records that dodge inspectors by changing their names and so-called DOT numbers, as in the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)... It's happening so often in northeast Ohio and across the country that they have a name for it. They're called 'chameleon carriers' and safety watchdogs say they're putting all drivers at risk... One such example involved Anthony Costello, of Lorain. He was about to retire when the truck he was driving suddenly crashed on I-90 in Lakewood, killing him. His family later learned the vehicle was too dangerous to drive... The family sued and won a $2.5 million settlement. But in a sad twist, they've so far collected nothing because the name change by the company left the truck uninsured, their attorney said... The government issues DOT numbers to identify companies and to monitor their safety records. But when safety scores go south, some companies obtain new numbers and change their names... The GAO also found that 18 percent of chameleon companies were involved in severe crashes. That's three times as many companies that have not changed their identities... 
 Lorain, OH, USA - WKYC, by Tom Meyer - May 17, 2017

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