Miami, FL- A Florida family is questioning why a truck driver with a history of drug use was allowed behind the wheel if a big rig. The driver in question was high on methamphetamine when he hit a car head-on instantly killing the two women inside, and now their loved ones want to know why he was able to keep his commercial driver’s license.
Truck Driver High on Meth Didn’t Know He Ran Over Car
On December 11, 2011, truck driver Michael Phillips veered out of his lane in State Road 64 outside Wauchula, Florida and hit a small passenger car head-on. One side if the car was demolished and both women were killed, ABC Action News reports.
During Phillips’s trial, an expert testified that Phillips had 10 to 20 times more meth in his system than a therapeutic dose. According to the Naples Daily News, the expert testified that most people with the same amount of meth Philips had in his system would be dead.
It took six years for Phillips to be sentenced for the women’s deaths. In October of this year, a judge sentenced him to life in prison. That should give their loved ones justice, but they are questioning why Phillips was on the road in the first place. They told ABC News that Florida needs to do more to keep drivers with DUI charges off the road.Just four percent of commercial trucking accidents involve a drunken or drugged driver.
Even though Phillips had two DUI convictions and a conviction for cocaine possession on his record, his CDL was valid until 2016.
“It’s unacceptable. It really is unacceptable, there is no reason drivers should be allowed; people with a CDL should be allowed to drive if they have a drug conviction or test positive for drugs,” Carol O’ Callaghan, mother of one of the women killed by Phillips said to ABC Action News.
The federal government will launch the Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse in 2020, but until then, it is difficult to get a trucker’s DUI history and see if they’ve tested positive for drugs. But have a positive drug test or causing an impaired-driving crash does not disqualify a person from driving or having their CDL reinstated. Drivers will also be allowed to control who sees their record and can deny access to their driving history.
The owner of the truck Phillips was driving said he did not do a background check.
Contact a Trucking Accident Attorney in Miami
If a truck driver hurts you or someone you love, call one of our commercial trucking accident lawyers in Miami, Florida if you want to recover compensation for your injuries or the loss of a family member. USAttorneys.com can connect you with an expert in trucking crashes.Consult with a truck accident lawyer in Miami, if you need help recovering compensation for a truck wreck.