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Dump truck crashes on Tokyo expressway, killing driver

16 Comments

A 58-year-old dump truck driver was killed when his vehicle flipped over and crashed on an expressway in Tokyo on Tuesday morning.

According to police, the accident occurred at around 3:45 a.m. on the Metropolitan Expressway near Roppongi in Minato Ward. Police said it appeared the driver lost control of the wheel on a curve near a junction on the expressway and the truck flipped over and crashed partly through the wall.

The truck was carrying earth and sand which spilled from the elevated expressway to the ground below. However, no one was hit by the falling load.

The driver was taken to hospital where he was confirmed dead on arrival.

The expressway remained closed for about eight hours, causing lengthy traffic delays.

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16 Comments
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I know these truck drivers come in for a lot of stick on these pages (with some justification, I might add), but many do put in inordinate hours at the wheel. I wouldn't be surprised if he had fallen asleep.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Still not a reason to drive like a maniac which 90% of em do regularly.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

In the UK and Europe we have a instrument fitted to the lorry called a tachograph this measures speed, time, distance, one of the features is a button that is pressed to say (when you have stopped) how much rest you have had, all of this data is stored on 1; a carbon disc 2; a digital card ( same size as a credit card) is this system used in Japan? potentially the driver could have fallen asleep at the wheel, he also could have had a heart attack, was his death related to him hitting the barrier IE was there any crash barrier that hit him in the cab? is there going to be an inspection to see if the lorry was defective? IE tyre blow out, did the steering fail? did he weave to miss another car? was he speeding? to put a 10-16 tonne lorry on its side with a full pay load is quite hard. in this case don't blame the driver, there needs to be an investigation first.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Likely speeding crazily and/or fell asleep at the wheel. In any case, looking at that pic it could have been a WHOLE lot worse if that truck had just been a little more off the expressway. Thank god no one was below to get hit with the sand.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Sad to hear. Yes my initial guess was more towards reckless driving but yes, could’ve been anything. The hours put in by the cab drivers are crazy and I won’t be surprised if heavy vehicles are similar.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

closed for 8 hours? just a couple police with chalk and a crane = 1hour. Then emergency bridge repair, while keeping limited traffic flow. its the capital city, so this should be easy.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

There is no legal limit on drivers overtime so he could have been racking up an inhuman amount. These guys are being whipped. Lucky it was at a quiet time of the morning. Hope he is resting peacefully now.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

My father was a long-distance truck driver when I was a child. They were required to keep log books documenting driving time, resting, sleeping, etc. When stopped by police, or at mandatory weigh stations, they were required to present their logs for inspection. Dad kept two sets, a private one for his boss to determine pay, and a public one presented upon demand by authorities. Truckers are subject to what he called "white line fever". In other words, being almost hypnotized by staring for prolonged periods.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Could have been much worse if it happened during the day and the truck fell to the road below. Expressways through the middle of cities are never a good idea.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

That's in front of Izumi Garden, at the junction of Roppongi Dori and Azabu Dori. If the driver was coming down from Roppongi crossing and followed the sharp curve back towards Azabu, it wouldn't take much to lose control, like driving at speed, losing attention or a sudden diversion due to the long-term expressway renovation work. In fact, it looks like the temporary fence for construction work stopped the truck from going over the side.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The railing on the highway looks like it barely held together . . . Japanese transportation authorities should look into the use of precast concrete barriers, a.k.a. 'Jersey Barriers' .

1 ( +1 / -0 )

R.I.P

apparently looks like the drivers fault but the very design of Tokyo Expressway is a big contributor to the accidents.

I hope something will be done about the nonsensical junctions where lane crossovers pile up traffic for miles, truck drivers and other public transport drives fast and recklessly once they are out of the rush to make up for lost time and one mistake can end up in an accident like this one.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There really isn't very much room for error on that road but I think the chuo expressway takes the biscuit for narrowness in places leaving Tokyo.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sad to hear. This place usually is worried about danger place by many people since before. He had been driving too fast that time. In this case, I think he might have lost attention, because he was used to driving. This accident is sad, but it is one consolation to think that no other people who fell victim.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

3am should be just about the time when a human is sleeping most heavily.

Having driven very long distances and in the early morning I know that it is almost impossible to stay awake at this time.....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My partner is a truck driver and does crazy hours like previous posters have mentioned. They can scarily fall asleep for a second without even noticing it. However I have gone on his trips many times and a lot of the time it’s not the truck driver at fault, but standard drivers here in Japan who merge without looking, no indicator, using their phone/tv and not paying attention or are too slow when entering the expressway which is at times, more dangerous than Speeding. Looking that this accident happened at 3:45am, truck drivers usually -start- at this time to avoid traffic and drop the cargo on time. So who knows what happened to cause this accident...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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