Substance Abuse in the Trucking Industry

Truck driving is a lonely profession.  Many truck drivers suffer from depression, or try to self-medicate with drugs and/or alcohol.  Other truck drivers may use drugs to combat fatigue during long hours on the road.  Though random drug and alcohol testing of drivers is mandatory for trucking companies, not all offenders are caught in the act.  This leaves other drivers on the road at risk of accidents with truck drivers who drive under the influence.  Driving under the influence is negligent behavior, and the offending driver will be held responsible for any damage caused.  If you have been injured because of a truck driver who was abusing drugs or alcohol while on the road, call an accident attorney in Gwinnett County as soon as possible.

According to the Truck Safety institute, statistics show that truck drivers most often use marijuana and methamphetamines or other stimulants.  Many drivers may believe that marijuana does not affect their judgment, reaction time, or ability to drive as much as other substances, such as alcohol.  However, this is not the case.  Marijuana actually slows reaction times and a driver’s ability to concentrate for up to a full 24 hours after the drug was smoked.  Statistics also show that marijuana played a role in nearly 13% of fatal truck accidents.

Truck driving involves long hours on the road, and drivers often look for ways to stay awake longer to make deliveries faster to earn more money.  Therefore, many truck drivers use stimulants like methamphetamines to keep them awake.  In fact, the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention revealed that 85% of truck drivers knew they could easily buy methamphetamines at truck stops.  However, simply because these stimulants keep drivers awake does not mean they are mentally alert.  The same dangers of sleep deprivation set in regardless of stimulant use or not.  Therefore, drivers may have significantly slower reaction times and can cause serious accidents.

If you have been injured by a truck driver who was under the influence, an experienced trucking accident attorney at Shane Smith Law can help you recover.  Please call us at (980) 246-2656 today.