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How often do truck drivers use drugs?

You already feel nervous when you drive next to a semi. It's huge, it's loud and all you can think about are blind spots and how the lower edge of the trailer is almost at the same level as your car's windows.

Now, what if you also knew that the driver of the semi was on drugs?

According to one report from Reuters Health, this is more common than a lot of people realize. It found that roughly 50 percent of truck drivers said they would drive after drinking alcohol, while about a third said they used amphetamines. Some parts of the study discovered that one out of five drivers admitted to using marijuana, and even 3 percent admitted to cocaine use.

It is worth noting that these studies essentially just asked drivers what they had done and then compiled the results. Therefore, only drug usage that drivers were willing to admit to made it into the study. The true numbers could be higher or lower, depending on whether or not some of the drivers decided to lie.

Still, it paints a fairly clear picture: Numerous truck drivers do admit to using drugs and then driving. Exact stats are hard to pin down, even when looking at arrest numbers, because not all drivers will admit to it and not all will be caught.

However, other drivers need to be aware of the danger. If a truck driver causes an accident and you're injured, you then may want to look into your potential rights to compensation for lost wages, medical bills, rehabilitation costs and the like.

Source: Reuters, "Drug use high among commercial truck drivers: study," Kathryn Doyle, accessed April 13, 2017

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