Truck Drivers Driving Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol

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Driving under the influence is never an acceptable behavior for motorists. However, what is already illegal and unethical becomes twice as dangerous when an operator of a heavy-duty truck is intoxicated behind the wheel. Heavy-duty trucks can weigh up to 40 tons as opposed to a passenger car which usually weighs in the two to four-ton range.

Suppose a truck operator causes a crash due to their negligent or reckless behavior of abusing substances behind the wheel. In that case, that accident can be much more dangerous for the innocent motorists in the accident’s footprint.

So, in this guide, we’ll be exploring the dangerous effects drugs and alcohol have on truck operators and discuss the side effects of using these substances. Finally, we’ll also examine what victims of drunk truck drivers can do if they are hurt in a crash.

If you need more information after an accident with a drunk truck driver, our legal team can help. Book a free, no-obligation case review and consultation with the Miller & Hine team online or call (314) 408-5708.

What Are Legal Alcohol And Drug Limits For Truck Drivers?

You might assume that the limits for truck drivers are the same as normal motorists. That isn’t the case. As opposed to a 0.08 blood alcohol content (BAC) limit for motorists, commercial driver’s license (CDL) drivers are only legally allowed a BAC of .04 in their system, according to the Missouri Department of Revenue.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there is no acceptable limit on the amount of any non-prescription drug in a truck driver’s system.

Side Effects Of Drug and Alcohol Abuse While Driving

For all drivers, driving with alcohol in your system causes significant issues. Alcohol is classified as a depressant, meaning it can suppress reaction time and awareness. Side effects of alcohol use include euphoria, dizziness, poor motor skills, slowed reaction time, nausea, and vomiting – all of which are exceptionally dangerous behind the wheel.

Some truck drivers may also be taking stimulants, also known as uppers, which speed up the body’s systems. Truckers often abuse stimulants to counteract tiredness behind the wheel, but can also trigger hallucinations, dizziness, tremors, headache, flushed skin, chest pain with palpitations, excessive sweating, vomiting, and abdominal cramps.

Alcohol and all forms of drugs are dangerous to ingest if the driver chooses to drive.

What To Do If You’ve Been An Accident With An Inebriated Trucker?

If you’ve been in an accident with a high or drunk trucker, it’s crucial to take immediate and appropriate action to protect yourself and your rights.

The first step is to ensure the safety of everyone involved by calling the authorities and seeking emergency medical attention. Even if you don’t believe you need medical attention, getting care is critical, as it establishes a line of documentation that ties any potential injuries to the accident.

It’s also advisable to contact a lawyer, like our team at Miller & Hine, who frequently handles accidents involving drunk or high drivers. A St. Louis truck accident lawyer can guide you through the process, help you understand your rights, and ensure you receive fair compensation for damages.

If this describes you, give us a call at (314) 408-5708 or by booking an appointment online.