MA Officials Blame Bureaucratic Mistake For Driver In N.H. Crash That Killed 7 Having A License

Jun 26, 2019

Seven people were killed in Randolph Friday evening in a crash involving a pickup truck and 10 motorcycles.
Credit Sean Hurley

The head of the Massachusetts motor vehicle division resigned Tuesday for that agency's failure to terminate the commercial driving license of a man whose collision with a group of motorcyclists in New Hampshire on Friday left seven people dead.

Listen: Reporter Todd Bookman talks with NHPR's Peter Biello about the latest updates in this story:

That driver shouldn't have had a license, but officials in Massachusetts are now blaming a bureaucratic error.

23-year old Volodymyr Zhukovskyy of West Springfield, Massachusetts was driving a pick-up truck towing a car trailer when he struck the group of motorcycle riders.

His driving record includes two previous DUI’s, including one from just six weeks ago in Connecticut. That should have triggered Massachusetts to revoke Zhukovskyy's commercial driver’s license, or CDL.

But Massachusetts alleges Connecticut failed to include key details about the DUI in an online database.

Massachusetts transportation officials say they should have conducted their own review of the DUI, but that didn’t happen. Tuesday night the head of the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles resigned over the failure.

On Tuesday, Zhukovskyy pleaded not guilty to seven counts of negligent homicide and was ordered to remain in preventive detention in New Hampshire, with a judge saying his driving record poses a potential danger to the public and himself.