NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV Channel 4) – The driver whose trailer rolled over on I-40 Monday with a load of horses on board has now been charged in that wreck.
The Tennessee Department of Safety says Mance Frank Reed has been cited for unsafe operation of a vehicle and driving fatigued. He is also charged with having problems with his brakes, his frame, and the tires on his trailer.
Monday night, three horses had to be euthanized after Reed’s trailer overturned on the interstate in Fairview. He was hauling 36 horses for Three Angels Farms in Lebanon. Reed told the troopers investigating the accident that he had fallen asleep.
Workers at a fuel stop told Channel 4 that Reed came in about three hours before the trip that day. They say the driver told them that earlier in the day, he reported to his boss, Dorian Ayache, that he had had a back procedure that day and didn’t feel fit to drive. The workers say Reed told them the owner, Ayache, said if he didn’t go, he’d be fired.
Ayache tells Channel 4 that the driver never told him he had a medical problem.
Monday’s livestock wreck was the second in three months for Three Angels Farms.
Tuesday, Channel 4 reported that the horses in Monday’s wreck were headed to Presidio, TX, according to the driver. That’s where horses are held in pens until they are exported to slaughterhouses in Mexico.
Ayache also told Channel 4 that his company was not responsible for horses that had been reported abandoned in Texas last summer. Ayache told Channel 4 Tuesday that his company does haul horses to the C-4 Cattle Company in Presidio, TX, but he denied that he had any role in leaving animals behind that had been rejected by the company.
News Channel 5 learned late Wednesday that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has launched an investigation in this case. Officials there said Ayache does not have a valid license to conduct interstate commerce. Source: http://www.newschannel5.com/story/16548811/investigation-launched-into-horse-trailer-crash