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Truck Driver Substance Abuse

Drugged and drunk driving is a huge issue in the United States and around the world, a problem that has spanned decades. While organizations like Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) have done much to pass legislation regarding the regulation and punishment of driving under the influence, people still make the poor decision to get behind the wheel after a couple of drinks. While drunk and drugged drivers behind the wheels of passenger cars can do significant damage to people and property alike, nothing can match the destructive capabilities of a commercial truck on the rampage.

Commercial truck drivers are responsible for driving the heaviest and largest vehicles on the road. In order to do so, they require commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs) that require knowledge of how to handle such an enormous truck and the consequences for driving them under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

However, despite this knowledge, some of them still make the mistake of getting behind the wheel while under the influence of narcotics or alcohol. According to a study by the State University of Londrina, drug use, in particular, is high among commercial truck drivers. The study included 36 previous studies in their review, including drivers from large countries that rely heavily on trucking, such as Brazil, the United States, and Australia. The majority of the studies relied only on what drivers admitted to taking in surveys, while about a dozen were based on physical drug testing.

According to the study, while drivers most frequently admitted to drinking alcohol, it was the substance found least often when they were given drug tests. One U.S. study had the highest frequency of positive alcohol tests compared to any other country (12.5%). Around 8% of drivers tested positive for amphetamines. Almost 20% of drivers reported they used marijuana, and 3% reported using cocaine.

While these studies were conducted on small, specific groups in many countries, they do give people something to consider. Most of the drug and alcohol abusers were young, inexperienced, and had longer routes that often involved nighttime driving. Some drivers take drugs like cocaine to stay active and alert, though the drug can be dangerous and impair their driving in other ways.

It’s up to trucking companies to have strict requirements for employment and regular random drug-testing after trucking accidents. If they do not follow regulations and do not take the precautions necessary to hire responsible drivers, they could be held liable in the event of an accident.

For more information, or to begin a case, contact us today. Our skilled West Virginia truck accident attorneys can help. Berthold Law Firm, PLLC has more than 60 years of legal experience to offer you case. Our top-rated and award-winning firm has lawyers who are committed to bringing irresponsible people to justice. Our team has recovered more than tens of millions of dollars in compensation for our clients. If you’ve been injured by a drunk or drugged driver, you deserve to recover anything you paid out of pocket for medical care and property damage. Let us see what we can do for you.

Call us at (304) 605-2040 or fill out our online form to schedule a free case consultation today.