Almost 900 Massachusetts drivers whose out-of-state traffic infractions had previously been overlooked have now had their licenses suspended in the aftermath of the deadly motorcycle crash in New Hampshire last month.
A 23-year old truck driver, Volodymyr Zhokoskyy crossed a double-yellow line and collided with a group of bikers and killed seven members of Marine Jarheads MC, a motorcycle club that includes former and active marines as well as their spouses. They were on their way to a nearby Veterans fundraiser.
Zhokoskyy is of West Springfield, Mass. and received a drunk-driving charge on May 11 in Connecticut. It should have instantly terminated his commercial drivers license. Officials say the Massachusetts RMV was notified but because of the way the systems are programed it was not processed correctly.
Lawmakers and administrators on Beacon Hill are watching as the Baker Administration and the RMV in the Commonwealth gather information as to why the documents from out-of-state were never taken care of the right way.
"It's egregious,” Bristol 6th District State Representative Carole Fiola told WSAR. “It's unacceptable. This is horrific what happened to the families of those who lost their lives in this accident."
Fiola said lawmakers in the Commonwealth are preparing to act once the investigation has concluded.
"There is an investigation underway right now,” she said. “We need answers. We need to know what actions need to be taken, if any. We're prepared."
State rep Fiola said that human error was at the core of the issues involved
"How could this have possibly happened?” she asked. “How are people driving that should not be driving? Lives were lost because human error. There were employees who were supposed to be doing this work of insuring people who were not supposed to be driving and who are dangers on the road, were driving. So, we need answers."
The suspensions that should have been issued starting in 2018 have now been processed . There remain questions about information that may not have been taken care of between 2001 and 2017
"We're going to have answers soon and we'll do whatever we need to at that point once we have the information," Fiola told WSAR.