The Car and Truck Fleet and Leasing Management Magazine

Company's Negligent Driver Check Contributes to Death

June 26, 2009

YORK, PA - York Services Inc. recently admitted that hiring a driver despite his poor performance history was a factor that led to the death of a local businessman in a 2006 crash, according to the York Daily Record and the York Dispatch.

The company's truck driver, Christopher Kolb, was operating one of York's tractor-trailers when he ran through a red light and crushed Michael Euculano's car in June 2006. Euculano, a well-known local businessman and civic volunteer, died of multiple blunt force trauma, reported the Daily Record.

York Services reportedly agreed it was negligent in hiring Kolb and that Kolb "was a factual cause and a substantial factor in causing the accident and death..."

York Services reportedly hired Kolb in 2005 despite:

  • his commercial driver's license being suspended in 2002.
  • his termination from a prior driving job due to a crash.
  • having "received a number of citations for motor vehicle violations."
  • and the documentation provided to York Services "that Kolb was unfit and incompetent to drive a tractor-trailer."

Kolb, 56, pleaded guilty to homicide by vehicle, reckless driving, and violating a red light signal in 2007, according to court documents. He was sentenced to 10 to 23 months in York County Prison and fined $225.

The Daily Record and the York Dispatch said York Services recently signed a stipulated agreement to pay Euculano's wife and estate $3 million in compensatory damages.

At Kolb's sentencing, Euculano's family requested he be prohibited from holding a commercial driver's license in the future "as a safety precaution that a similar tragedy may not befall other individuals," according to the Daily Record.

Part of the stipulated agreement in the civil case is that Kolb agrees never to reapply for a commercial driver's license or operate a vehicle requiring such a license, reported the Daily Record.

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