Truck Driver DUI Accident
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At Belt & Bruner, P.C., our Alabama truck driver DUI accident lawyers and legal staff are committed to holding negligent and reckless truck drivers and the companies that hire them accountable for the harm they cause. We understand the financial, physical and emotional injury that victims of commercial truck crashes suffer. We want to help them obtain the compensation they need to rebuild and carry on with their lives.
The trucking industry is highly regulated. As one might expect, federal regulations address impaired driving by truckers. Truck drivers are frequently tested to ensure that they are not under the influence of alcohol or mood-altering drugs while piloting large trucks, which are also commonly called tractor-trailers, 18-wheelers, semis, and big rigs. If you’ve been the victim of a truck driver DUI accident, contact the right help today.
Our truck accident lawyers can put our skills, experience, and resources to work for you if you or a loved one has been harmed in an accident caused by a drunk or drugged truck driver.
Truck Drivers and Alcohol and Drug Use
Federal rules require drug and alcohol testing of drivers in the trucking, mass transit, and other transportation industries. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) administers tests for:
- Marijuana (THC metabolite)
- Amphetamines (including methamphetamine, or “meth”)
- Opiates (including heroin and certain prescription bills such as Vicodin and Hydrocodone)
- Phencyclidine (PCP).
Tests for controlled substances and alcohol are conducted for:
- Pre-employment (controlled substances only)
- Reasonable suspicion
- At random
The federal and state trucking regulations say that truck drivers cannot perform safety-sensitive functions (like driving) while using alcohol, within four hours of consuming alcohol or while registering a breath alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.04 percent or greater in a BAC test.
The FMCSA (and criminal law) bans the use of controlled substances by truckers who are on or off duty. Additional FMCSA rules ban legally prescribed controlled substances (such as barbiturates, amphetamines, morphine, etc.) by drivers involved in interstate commerce.
Nevertheless, drunk-driving truck accidents and drugged driving wrecks still occur. A recent NHTSA report found that 3,446 large truck drivers were involved in fatal crashes in 2011. Of them, 25 had a BAC of 0.8 to 0.14 percent, and 36 had a BAC of 0.15 percent or more.
The detrimental effects of alcohol and drugs on a truck driver or the operator of any motor vehicle are well understood. Alcohol and/or drug impairment slows reactions and decision making. Impairment makes it harder to judge distances. It also can adversely affect steering, staying in lanes or applying the brakes in a timely manner.
Our Truck Driver DUI Accident Lawyers Can Help You
The drunk / drugged driving truck accident lawyers of the Belt & Bruner, P.C. believe that when someone is injured or killed in a tractor-trailer wreck caused by an impaired truck driver, the responsible party or parties must be held accountable. The truck driver, the employing trucking company or any other person or entity that contributed to the trucker’s condition may be held liable.
FMCSA regulations specifically state that those who employ truck drivers are as responsible as the truck driver for adhering to alcohol and drug policies. So, if a trucker involved in a wreck that caused injury or death is found to have been impaired by alcohol or drugs, both driver and employer may be liable.
Once the Belt & Bruner, P.C.’s truck driver DUI accident lawyers take on your drunk or drugged-driving truck accident case, we will thoroughly research and review every aspect of the accident. Our team will work with experts in accident reconstruction, engineering, and mechanical design to develop evidence that supports your legal claim.
In addition to police reports, we will obtain and examine drivers’ logs, electronic on-board recorders, cell phone records and other records to establish where and when the truck traveled prior to the accident. We will also consult doctors and health care planners to help us determine the full extent of your injuries and the costs you are likely to face in your recovery.
Truck accidents are complex, and working through the myriad of state and federal trucking regulations can be difficult. Also, large trucking firms and their insurance companies have teams of attorneys skilled at shifting blame and minimizing payments to injury victims. That’s why picking an attorney is crucial.
Our drugged driving truck accident attorneys are aggressive advocates with extensive experience against trucking firms in Alabama and elsewhere in the Southeast. We are ready to negotiate with insurance companies and to prepare and present cases in court.
Keith T. Belt, Jr., the law firm’s founder, has been named a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by the American Trial Lawyers Association and is also an Alabama Super Lawyer. Combined, our truck driver DUI accident attorneys have more than 65 years of trial experience in state and federal courts.
We’ll work hard to make sure you get the compensation you and your family deserve.
Contact Our Truck Driver DUI Accident Lawyers Today
If you or a family member has suffered property loss, physical injuries, or emotional pain because of an accident involving an impaired driver in a commercial truck, contact the Birmingham impaired driving truck accident attorneys of Belt & Bruner, P.C.
Call our truck driver DUI accident lawyers today at 205-933-1500 or use our online form. We have a strong record of securing maximum settlements and verdicts for truck accident victims. We can provide you with a free case evaluation and get you started on the path to legal relief.