Crackdown on drunk truck driving accidents

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration hopes to make Wheaton, Illinois residents safer with a new database targeting a reduction in drunk driving.

People who live in Wheaton, Illinois enjoy the area's high standard of living including a sense of safety and community. When that safety is in jeopardy, everyone can suffer. This can happen for many reasons, including the dangers presented by motor vehicle accidents that are caused by the negligence of truck drivers.

Truck driver fatigue has long been identified as a contributing factor in many such collisions but so too is the combination of a large truck and a driver who chooses to operate that vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Serious consequences and fatal injuries are too commonly the result of such a combination. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is aware of this and is taking action to help improve safety on the roads for everyone.

As outlined by the industry publication the Commercial Carrier Journal, the FMCSA expects to launch in 2016 a new database with clear requirements for its use. The effort is referred to as the Commercial Driver's Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse rule within the commercial transportation industry. The goal of the database is very clearly to reduce the instances of drunk driving and drugged driving truck accidents throughout Illinois and the nation.

How will the new clearinghouse work?

Every person who holds a license to drive commercially will have records included in the database. These records must be reviewed by potential employers before any driving position can be accepted and initiated. This pre-employment screen is intended to alert employers to potential dangers of impaired driving by a particular job candidate. The written consent of drivers will be required prior to reviewing the database records.

Also part of the pre-employment application process is the requirement to participate in testing to screen for drugs and alcohol. The employers will be required to submit the results of these tests to the database and they will be accessible for future reviews.

Also to be submitted to the database will be any refusals of candidates to participate in the drug or alcohol testing process. Drivers can refuse this testing but by doing so they will limit their employment opportunities to non-driving positions only.

Real dangers need real help

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 86 people died in drunk driving accidents involving truck drivers in 2012. Illinois residents deserve the right to get help in the face of such dangers and tragedies. Working with an attorney when an accident occurs is recommended for all victims.

Keywords: truck, accident, injury