Court sides with truckers in Minnesota fatigue fight

St. Paul, MN – The Minnesota State Patrol must reverse a number of determinations of truckers found impaired due to fatigue during a 2.5-year period and ensure proper fatigue inspection training for all troopers, according to a ruling from the U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota.

A 2009 lawsuit filed by the Grain Valley, MO-based Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association alleged MSP violated the Fourth Amendment when it conducted roadside inspections to determine if truckers were fatigued. In a January ruling, U.S. District Judge Donovan W. Frank agreed with OOIDA and granted the association an injunction and declaratory relief.

On Sept. 21, Frank issued an order (.pdf file) specifying the relief, which includes rescinding inspection reports from April 1, 2008, to Sept. 30, 2010, that found drivers were impaired due to fatigue, as well as rescinding all out-of-service orders directly related to that determination, except if the driver was criminally convicted.

Frank noted that MSP’s current training program is constitutional as long as the training continued to address the limitations and restrictions of the inspection program.

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