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Cheating truck drivers pose a real danger to other motorists

Obviously, driving a coupe or even an SUV is nothing like driving a massive 18-wheeler truck. Therefore, it is no surprise that individuals who want to drive these colossal, heavy, and dangerous vehicles need to acquire a commercial driver's license and not just a regular driver's license. Unfortunately, not every truck driver attains their CDL through legitimate means. In fact, cases recently reported by the Department of Transportation's Office of Inspector General have shown that cheating truck drivers are not as uncommon as many people seem to think.

Cheating truck driver schemes

In the past year, the Department of Transportation's Office of Inspector General conducted a few criminal investigations related to cheating truck drivers and trucking companies. These investigations focused on truck drivers who had attained illegitimate CDLs.

Here are some of the crimes discovered during the investigation:

  • Forging medical forms - In order to obtain a CDL, the applicant must be in good health. One truck driver pled guilty to forging the signature of a nurse on the medical card and form, two documents that are required by the Department of Transportation.
  • CDL test bribery - A CDL examiner confessed that he accepted cash from applicants and faked their test results. The applicants never actually took the CDL test.
  • Huge CDL scams - Three people were found to be helping applicants cheat on CDL tests for profit. They hired external guards, test-takers, and facilitators to help them run the scam.

Effect on motorist safety

Massive 18-wheeler trucks have the potential to inflict major damage. If a commercial truck were to collide with a vehicle of average size on the road, more likely than not, the driver would be severely injured or even killed. Due to the immense destructive potential of commercial trucks, it is important that their drivers are skilled and experienced. Unfortunately, it is difficult to know how many truck drivers are faking their medical records and paying for their CDLs rather than rightfully earning them. Both of these issues are causing possibly unfit drivers to get behind the wheel of incredibly dangerous vehicles.

What does this mean for you?

If you were involved in a truck accident with a commercial truck, don't automatically assume that you are to blame. It is possible that the truck driver did not have the proper training or met the other prerequisites to operate the commercial truck safely. To learn more about your legal options in this situation, reach out to an experienced personal injury attorney. 

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Orin J. Cohen Law
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