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Truck Drivers and Drug Use

According to a recent study, truck drivers, who generally work long hours in a job that requires heightened focus, have a higher rate of “mind altering” drug use. Although many truck drivers admit to using alcohol on the job, it is estimated that nearly thirty (30) percent of drivers have also utilized controlled substances while operating their commercial vehicles.

Common Drug Usage Among Truck Drivers

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, each year nearly 88,000 people are injured as a result of large truck crashes, and many of these crashes result from excessive fatigue and impairment due to drugs or alcohol. Whether taken as a coping mechanism to overcome poor working conditions or as a stimulant to fight fatigue, truck drivers may turn to the following substances:

  • Alcohol
  • Marijuana
  • Amphetamines
  • Cocaine

Effects of Drug Usage

While alcohol and marijuana actually work to increase fatigue and decrease focus on the road, many truck drivers turn to cocaine and certain amphetamines to increase their focus and fight fatigue. However, both the long and short-term side effects of these drugs can lead to the following symptoms:

  • Vertigo
  • Agitation
  • Hallucinations
  • Changes in perception
  • Changes in reactions and reaction time

Almost nothing presents more of a danger to those who share the road with large truck drivers than a combination of these symptoms. Hallucinations, changes in perception, dizziness, and decreased reaction time can lead to potentially fatal truck accidents.

Contact Qualified Truck Accident Lawyers Today

If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck, semi-truck, tractor-trailer, or similar commercial vehicle accident and believe drugs and/or alcohol may have contributed to its cause, be sure to contact an experienced national truck accident law firm. Contracting truck accident lawyers can greatly increase your chance of receiving compensation, as they are familiar with the strict federal drug and health regulations applicable to the truck driving industry. The attorneys at McEwen & Kestner are the nation’s leading truck injury lawyers, with a reputation for success representing clients injured in drug related trucking accidents. For questions about your truck accident, contact their Minnesota office today for a FREE, no-risk consultation at (800) 732-3070.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-drug-truckdrivers-idUSBRE99O0T520131025

https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/safety/data-and-statistics/large-truck-and-bus-crash-facts-2014

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