OHP Finds Falsified Logs Inside Semi That Caused Fatal Turnpike Crash
LUTHER, Oklahoma - State troopers are releasing new information about Tuesday's deadly crash on the Turner Turnpike near Luther. A driver faces manslaughter charges after his semi plowed into four cars, killing two people and seriously injuring another. There may be more charges still to come.
Troopers are still trying to understand why Gurigbal Singh, 39, did not notice the traffic slowing down around him, but some falsified records found inside his truck are complicating the investigation.
Multiple witnesses tell state troopers they saw Singh flying past them moments before the collision.
“It was apparent that he wasn’t slowing down,” said OHP spokesman Capt. Paul Timmons. “He had already passed six advanced warning signs stating there was a construction zone coming up.”
By the time Singh started to brake, it was too late.
“It takes two football fields to shut down a loaded truck,” said “Maniac” Melton, whose brother Ronnie, 44, survived the crash, but was pinned in his truck and suffered a broken collarbone, ankle and ribs.
Melton spent the night in ICU at OU Med. “He’s a Marine, just like the rest of us,” his brother said. “He’s fighting it, but he’s tough.”
Sadly, though, Barbara Homan, 53, and Tony Ibanez, 44, who were in the car behind Melton, did not survive.
Investigators have already concluded Singh must have been distracted while driving his semi.
The Melton brothers, both longtime truck drivers themselves, demand to know more.
“Maniac” asked, “How many hours had he been driving? Had he took his mandatory 30 minute break? Is their company CSA score good or bad? I just want to know. I want answers.”
Answers may not come as easily as they are hoping.
Timmons said investigators “did do an inspection of the log books and were able to determine there were violations in the log books.”
Troopers say falsified logs are a civil matter, and they have been handed over to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration for a separate investigation.
OHP's homicide unit continues to investigate the crash itself and will report their findings to the district attorney to see if any additional charges are warranted. Singh remains in jail on a $20,000 bond for two counts of first-degree manslaughter.
Singh was driving for Trust In God Transport, Inc. out of California. Government reports show the company has had no prior crashes, fatal or otherwise, on record for the past two years.