How Common is Substance Use Among Truck Drivers?
Driving a commercial truck takes skill and focus. Truck drivers must obtain a special license before they can begin performing the job. It is important for truck drivers to be sober while they are operating a massive vehicle capable of causing extreme harm to those around it. Making a single careless mistake while driving a commercial truck can cause devastation if the truck hits other vehicles or lands on a populated sidewalk. When a truck driver is under the influence of an illicit substance, they are far more likely to make a careless mistake. If you have recently been injured in a truck accident, drugs or alcohol could have been a factor in your crash. An attorney may be able to recover the results of the truck driver’s drug and alcohol screening in order to gain evidence that substances likely led to the accident.
What You Should Know About Substance Use and Truck Drivers
One study showed that almost 30% of truck drivers use illicit substances. Among these drivers, amphetamines were the most commonly used substance. Amphetamines can come in many forms, from prescription pills used to treat ADHD to methamphetamine sold on the street. What is alarming about this fact is that these drugs are commonly used as a performance enhancing substance. People using these drugs may not feel tired even if they are in reality significantly sleep deprived. Cocaine is another commonly used drug among truck drivers.
The fact that these drugs can be used to keep people feeling awake and alert suggests that drivers are likely using them to stay awake on long haul drives. Drivers who are using these substances may not feel that they need to take their mandatory rest breaks. Unfortunately, while being under the influence of stimulants may make one feel awake, they can still impair a driver’s ability to operate safely.
In most cases, when a truck driver is at fault in an accident, they must comply with drug and alcohol testing. If the driver tests positive, this can help your lawyer prove your case. While it can help a great deal if the driver is arrested for intoxicated driving, you may still be able to prove intoxication using the results of the drug test if they have not been arrested.
Contact a Cook County Truck Accident Attorney
If you have been injured in a truck accident, Schwartz Injury Law can help. Our team of Orland Park truck accident lawyers will strive to win you the full amount of compensation you may be entitled to. For a free consultation, contact us at 708-888-2160.