Why is Drug Use of Particular Concern for Commercial Truck Drivers?

February 8, 2017

Multi-ton commercial trucks are difficult to operate in the best of circumstances.  Roadways are never the place to take unwarranted risks and this is especially true for commercial truck drivers.  Commercial trucks take longer to stop, they do not have the responsiveness that most vehicles do, and they often carry hazardous materials.

Contact us immediately if you or a loved one has been injured or killed by a commercial truck driver.

What Drugs are Commercial Truck Drivers Tested For?

Federal laws require commercial truck drivers to be tested for the following types of drugs:

  • Marijuana,
  • Cocaine,
  • Opiates (opium and codeine derivatives),
  • Amphetamines and methamphetamines, and
  • Phencyclidine (PCP).

Different drugs can impact truck drivers very differently.  Some drugs cause users to become anxious, hyper-sensitive, irritable, aggressive and willing to take unnecessary risks.  Other types of drugs may depress a user’s ability to react, inhibit concentration and or cause a lack of focus.

Drivers should remain sober during the operation of their trucks.  Contact Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC at 888-777-7098 today if you believe you were injured by a commercial truck driver who was operating his or her vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

What are the Consequences of a Failed Drug Test for Commercial Truck Drivers?

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, failing (or refusing) a drug test will have serious consequences for commercial truck drivers.

  • Positive test results, or a refusal to submit to a test, requires the driver to be immediately removed from operating any commercial truck on public roadways.
  • A drug test failure, or a refusal to submit to drug testing, may result in extended periods of unemployment as drivers are required to go through steps to show they are prepared and able to safely operate their commercial trucks before returning to work.
  • Even after returning to work, a driver will be required to submit to additional drug testing which adds increased stress and financial strain on the driver.

These protections are in place for a reason.  Commercial trucks are extremely dangerous in the best of conditions.  When a driver chooses to use drugs or alcohol an unacceptable risk is posed to everyone.

Can the Trucking Company Be Liable For My Injuries?

Commercial trucking companies make money by moving cargo as quickly as possible from one location to another.  Trucking companies must take reasonable steps to ensure that their trucks are operated as safely as possible.  This means that every trucking company must conduct background checks and ongoing drug testing of employee drivers.

A trucking company may be liable for the harm caused by one of their drivers when that company failed to properly test the driver, allowed the driver to operate a truck knowing he or she had drug or alcohol issues or where the trucking company failed to ensure that an offending driver completed any required testing.

How Can Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC Help Me if I Have Been Injured?

Contact a Stroudsburg wrongful death attorney at Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC today if you have been injured in an accident.  We have been representing clients for more than 30 years and we know what difficulties and issues you will face.  We take pride in being available to our clients when they need us.  Call us at 888-777-7098 today and let us show you how we can help.