Compensation for Indiana Truck Driver Accidents Caused by Opioid Pain Killers

Know your rights when you’re injured by a driver under the influence of drugs

Prescription opioids were supposed to be the miracle drugs of the new millennium. They promised effective management of chronic, debilitating pain without dependency. However, it wasn’t long before that promise proved false, as millions of Americans became addicted. As a result, we are dealing with an opioid epidemic in the United States, with dire consequences for users of the drugs and for the general public.

Opioid use presents a significant danger to highway safety as commercial truck drivers resort to these drugs to manage pain so as to perform better behind the wheel. Excessive use of these drugs can impair drivers to the point of being likely to cause severe accidents. If you have been injured in a commercial truck accident, Massengill, Caldwell & Coughlin, P.C. in Bristol, Tennessee is determined to help. If we find that opioid use impaired the driver, we will work to hold all parties accountable, including the trucking company and the drug company.

Determining if the truck driver was on opioids

If a driver is visibly impaired, the police should test and make an arrest for DUI. However, conventional Breathalyzer or urine tests will not pick up opioids. A breath test has been developed for this issue but is not widely available. Because of these limitations, it often is up to an injured person's truck accident lawyer to discover whether prescription opioids played a role in the crash.

Intensive investigation to uncover valuable evidence

Filing a lawsuit gives a plaintiff’s attorney the power to subpoena documents and depose witnesses. In the course of our investigation, we can demand records related to the truck driver’s employment, which include results of the Department of Transportation’s mandated physical examination of drivers. We can also demand the driver's post-accident medical exam, the driver's workers' compensation insurance documents, medical records from the trucker's primary care provider and hospital records. Any of these may contain clues about how long and how heavily a driver has been using certain drugs.

Holding truckers and trucking companies accountable

Under current regulations, the driver is the person primarily responsible for monitoring opioid use. Yet, supervisors at the trucking company should have some protocols in place to monitor their employees. When an accident occurs, either or both of these defendants could be liable on the following grounds:

  • The driver — for negligence by driving while impaired
  • The trucking company —for negligent supervision and vicariously for the negligence of its employee while on the job

Our attorneys will thoroughly investigate the facts of your case to identify all potentially liable parties and to hold them fully accountable for your losses.

Contact our Bristol, TN trucking accident attorneys for a free consultation

Massengill, Caldwell & Coughlin, P.C. in Bristol, TN represents victims of truck accidents, including those cause by impaired drivers. To speak to a knowledgeable attorney, call us today at 423-797-6022 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation.