Negligent truck drivers can cause major problems for motorists on the roads. Massive tractor trailers have special driving requirements and need well-qualified, responsible and fully alert truckers to operate them. When truckers drive while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs, however, they risk the lives of thousands of people in Maryland and across the nation. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that 3,744 people were killed in 2014 in large truck accidents throughout the country. Approximately 49 large truck fatalities occurred in Maryland alone, making up 7.6 percent of motor vehicle fatalities in the state. As a way to reduce this large number of preventable deaths, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has organized a national database filled with information regarding truck driver drug and alcohol screenings.
In addition to the results of drug and alcohol screenings, the Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse will show when a driver has refused to take a screening test, received a traffic violation and/or citation, as well as any other comments entered in by previous trucking employers the driver may have had.
Before trucking companies hire a new driver, they will be able to perform a search of the database in order to gain more information regarding their new hire. The company can them make a more educated decision when it comes to hiring employees who are best qualified for the position. Companies can also limit their liability when it comes to hiring dangerous and potentially negligent truckers. The new program hopes to reduce large truck accidents, injuries and deaths.