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How Common is Substance Use Among Truckers?

Long Haul Truckers and Substance Use

Long-haul truckers put in a lot of hours on the road; for many, that can mean a lot of time alone with nothing to do but think. It's no surprise then that many turn to drugs and alcohol to help pass the time and cope with feelings of loneliness. In this blog, we'll take a look at some statistics on substance use among long-haul truckers as well as the dangers of using drugs and alcohol while driving.

Substance Use Statistics

In 2021, nearly 60,000 drug tests were administered on behalf of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA); among these, over half were from the pre-employment screening phase. For commercial driver's license (CDL) holders who underwent testing, the most commonly found substances were:

  • Marijuana (52% of positive tests)
  • Cocaine (14.7% of positive tests)
  • Methamphetamine (8.5% of positive tests)
  • Amphetamine (8.2% of positive tests)

Despite being broken down into specific substances, opioids are overwhelmingly the most commonly found. However, there has been much speculation in recent years about certain drug use being underreported, as the FMCSA's database does not factor in hair tests.

Why is Substance Use Dangerous for Truck Drivers?

Truck drivers are held to a higher standard than the average driver; this is due to the increased responsibility that comes with operating such a large and dangerous vehicle. When a truck driver is using drugs or alcohol, they are putting not only their own lives at risk but also the lives of everyone else on the road.

If you or someone you know is a truck driver who is using drugs or alcohol, there are resources available to help. Many trucking companies have programs in place to help drivers get the treatment they need.

New York Truck Accident Attorney

If you are ever in an accident caused by a drugged or drunk truck driver, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact The Paris Law Group, PC today by calling (888) 365-4940 to learn about your options.