Brooklyn Drug and Alcohol Testing Procedures Accident

While passenger vehicles and commercial trucks are different in many ways, when a passenger vehicle is involved in a car accident there are often many similarities to when a truck is in an accident. For example, when a commercial truck is involved in an accident the use of drugs or alcohol is often a contributing factor just like when a car is involved in an accident. In fact, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) approximately 20% of truck accidents each year involve the use of alcohol, illegal drugs or over-the-counter drugs by the truck driver. The long, tiring and tedious nature of this type of work leads drivers to use drugs to help stay awake and alert, or as a distraction from their difficult work lives. Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is not only illegal, it is also quite dangerous. Those under the influence are likely to cause an accident. Because of the size and weight of large commercial trucks, when they are involved collisions, there is a good chance that the result would be a serious personal injury or death. Thousands more suffer serious injuries such as broken bones, internal injuries, contusions, a brain injury, amputations, paralysis, or spinal cord injury. If you were injured in a truck accident that you believe was caused by a truck driver who was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, it is important that you immediately contact a Brooklyn Drug and Alcohol Testing Procedures Accident Lawyer as you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. You may also be entitled to compensation for any medical malpractice claim that arises based on treatment you received for the truck accident injuries.

Federal Standards

In order to try to prevent truck accidents involving drug and alcohol, the Department of Transportation along with the FMCSA, enacted rules and regulations regarding alcohol and drug testing that specifically apply to commercial truck drivers. These rules are distinct from general driving while intoxicated rules that apply to drivers of all types of vehicles. For example, the trucking regulations include drug and alcohol testing requirements and administrative procedures for motor carriers.

  • Use of alcohol while on duty. A commercial truck driver is not permitted to use alcohol within 4 hours of going on duty. A driver is not permitted to possess wine, beer or distilled spirits while on duty.
  • Use of drugs while on duty. A commercial driver is not permitted to use a controlled substance while on duty unless the use of the controlled substance is pursuant to the instructions of a physician and the substance will not negatively affect the driver’s ability to operate the truck.
  • Drug testing. Employers must perform pre-employment testing, random drug and alcohol testing, and reasonable suspicion testing. If a driver tests positive for a controlled substance, an employer is prohibited from allowing that driver drive or perform any other safety sensitive function.
Pursuing a Claim for a Truck Accident

Truck accidents can be devastating to a victim as well as to the victim’s family. Because of the size and weight of large trucks, even low-impact, low-speed accidents can have catastrophic results. Through a personal injury lawsuit, New York law allows you to hold the negligent party responsible for the losses you suffered. In the case where the accident was caused by the truck driver being under the influence, the defendant in the personal injury lawsuit may be not only the truck driver, but also the driver’s employer.

Victims who suffer serious injuries in truck accidents have significant medical bills. In addition, because victims of serious injuries often have to miss a great deal of work or are unable to return to work at all, victims have the right to sue for lost wages and loss of earning capacity. If a family member was killed in a truck accident, under New York law certain members of the deceased’s family have the right to pursue a claim against the negligent parties.

Beware that New York law has a specific time limit for filing a personal injury or wrongful death claim. If you do not file your claim within the time period, you will be forever barred from collecting damages even if your case has merit.

Brooklyn Drug and Alcohol Testing Procedures Accident Lawyer

Being involved in a truck accident can be devastating. You may have to face not only physical pain and a long recovery process, you may also face financial distress. A proper investigation into the accident will determine whether the truck driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or if the driver or trucking company violated any other regulations imposed by the federal government and by New York State. The staff at Stephen Bilkis & Associates, PLLC has years of experience in helping injured victims and their families through the complex process of accident investigation in New York. Contact us at 1.800.NY.NY.LAW (1.800.696.9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case.

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