Protecting motorists from drunk truck drivers

It goes without saying that semi-trucks have the potential to cause massive damage when involved in accidents with other vehicles in Shelby. For this reason, truckers are tasked with maintaining strict performance standards, which of course includes avoiding drinking while driving their vehicles. Yet despite reductions in the number of drunk driving incidents reported involving truckers in recent years, some still continue to engage in this negligent practice. Indeed, according to information shared by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, two percent of truck drivers involved in fatal accidents in 2014 had BAC concentrations higher than .08. 

Should a trucker choose to drink and drive, liability of course rests upon him or her for any accidents he or she may cause. Does his or her employer, however, have an added responsibility to ensure that motorists are protected from drunk truck drivers? Sections 382.301-303 of the Federal Transportation Code show that the answer to that question is yes. In fact, companies who hire truck drivers are required by law to test such drivers for controlled substances prior to allowing them behind the wheel. The only exceptions to this rule would be if the driver has completed a controlled substances testing program within the last 30 days and either was subject to random testing as part of that program for the previous 12 months or has a produced a negative test result within the last six. He or she must also not have any other previous Department of Transportation violations to qualify for this exception. 

Furthermore, the law mandates that any driver that is involved in a truck accident that produces fatalities, injuries or damage must be tested for alcohol as soon as is practically possible following said incident. Such testing must be administered by his or her employer. 

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