Truck safety is a common concern for Missourians who share the road with these large vehicles. This stems from the speeds at which they travel, the distances drivers must cover and the possibility of negligence, truck driver fatigue, distraction and being under the influence causing a crash. Industry experts are aware of the problems that trucks pose and seek to educate lawmakers and the public on the risks. After a truck accident, people who have been hurt or lost a loved one should know about the possibility that driver behavior was a cause as this can be a key factor in a legal filing.
In a recent meeting, the Trucking Alliance told Congress that a worrisome number of drivers manipulate drug testing procedures and, for safety, should be taken off the road. According to the Trucking Alliance, more than 150,000 aspiring truckers were asked to take part in two tests to determine if they had drugs in their systems. One was a urinalysis and the other was a hair analysis. Almost all were licensed commercial drivers. Ninety-four percent of the drivers tested free of drugs. Thousands failed one or both tests. The U.S. Department of Transportation only recognizes urinalysis. Most truck companies also use urinalysis as their main testing procedure. These tests were found to be notoriously inaccurate.
Drugs were found in 949 of the drivers’ urine tests. That came to one percent. Nearly 9,000 – 8.6 percent – failed the hair test or refused to take it. Overall, nine out of 10 drivers who had used drugs were missed. Cocaine was the drug that was found in drivers’ systems most frequently. Next were opioids, followed by marijuana. If drivers refused or failed the test, they were not hired. However, they were likely able to get work as a trucker at other companies that relied on urinalysis. The Trucking Alliance recommends that at least 300,000 drivers be taken off the road. Their behavior and ability to use drugs and still be allowed to drive is placing people in jeopardy.
One of the fundamental rules for truckers is that they get on the road sober and free from intoxicating substances. A truck company is obligated to test drivers to make certain that this is the case. Unfortunately, as this information shows, many drivers are skirting the rules and drive after using drugs. This can cause truck accidents with injuries and death. People who have been involved in a truck crash should take the necessary steps to determine the cause and use that information as part of a legal filing for compensation with assistance from a qualified legal professional.