In most cases, yes, a commercial truck operator should undergo a drug or alcohol test following a crash to determine whether he or she was under the influence of any type drug or substance at the time of the incident. Who provides this test? Well, it will likely be the law enforcement agency that reports to the accident scene as well as the driver’s employer.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), an alcohol and drug test must be performed by the trucker’s employer after a crash when the following circumstances exist:
- The collision results in a human fatality.
- The crash results in bodily injury with immediate medical treatment away from the scene.
- The accident results in disabling damage to any motor vehicle requiring tow away.
Of course, employers along with law enforcement agencies can also test a commercial truck driver when they suspect he or she is under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of a collision that does not result in an injury to another, a fatality, or disabling damage.
How are commercial truck drivers tested for drugs and alcohol after a crash?
When an employee who is responsible for operating a commercial truck is involved in an accident, he or shall be notified that they are required to submit to a drug test and alcohol test. In order to determine if the driver had drugs in his or her system, he or she will be asked to provide a urine sample. The sample shall be analyzed, and the results will then be sent to the Medical Review Officer (MRO). The MRO is then responsible for reviewing the lab results and will determine if there “is any legitimate medical reasons for a positive, adulterated, or substituted result.” The U.S. Department of Transportation Office of the Secretary says that the MRO may conduct an interview with the driver, review medical records, or request that the operator is examined by a physician approved by the MRO. Ultimately, the MRO is the person who will determine whether the results from the drug test were negative or positive.
In order to test a trucker to see if he or she has alcohol in their system, they will be asked to submit to an alcohol test that shall be conducted by a Screening Test Technician or a Breath Alcohol Technician. If the truckers BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) level is less than .02, no further testing shall be performed. However, if it is greater than .02, they will be required to take a confirmation test, says the U.S. Department of Transportation Office of the Secretary.
I was involved in an accident in Fort Lauderdale, FL with a commercial truck driver that may have been under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. What should I do?
To ensure your interests are protected, you are going to want to hire a Fort Lauderdale, FL truck accident attorney. Many of the truck companies that have their vehicles out and operating are protected by attorneys of their own and if you want to be sure the driver is properly punished and that you are awarded the compensation you deserve, you are going to need to retain an experienced lawyer of your own. To get connected with an attorney in your area now, go ahead and contact Gabriela C. Novo, P.A.
Gabriela C. Novo, P.A. can be reached at:
200 S.E. 6thStreet, Suite 102
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301