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Driving Under the Influence and Fatigue Common Factors in Truck Accidents

Truck drivers put in long hours. They often work around the clock and in back to back shifts to meet deadlines and the demands of their employers. As a result, they can end up running behind on sleep. To make matters worse, they may use intoxicating substances to relax, to stay awake, or to pass the time. This is a highly dangerous combination. Adding in other substances only amplifies the effects of being tired. It increases the likelihood of truck accidents, which can result in serious and potentially life-threatening injuries.   

DUI, Fatigue Likely Factors in Portland Truck Accident

According to a June 10, 2019 report by Fox 12 Oregon, a large pickup truck recently crashed into a home in the Portland area. Based on the time it occurred, driving under the influence and fatigue on the part of the driver are potential factors that may have been involved in the accident. It happened near Southeast 145th Avenue and Southeast Lincoln Street, shortly after 1:00 a.m. Sunday morning. A local resident and her daughter were sleeping just feet away when they heard what sounded like an explosion.

The truck crashed through the front room of the home and caused extensive damage to the garage, coming dangerously close to hitting the property gas line. Fortunately, the woman, her roommate, and others in the house at the time were uninjured. The driver and three other men suspected of being in the vehicle abandoned the truck and fled the scene. The accident is still under investigation by the Portland Police and there is no word yet on the causes or whether those involved were apprehended.

DUI and Fatigue-Related Truck Accidents

While the above incident did not cause any physical injuries for the victims, it was traumatic and resulted in significant property damages. It would have been significantly worse had the truck involved been larger. Driving while fatigued or under the influence is common among semi truck, tractor trailer, and other big rig operators. Due to the massive size and bulk of these vehicles, injuries associated with these types of truck accidents can prove life-threatening and, in many cases, fatal.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), long hours away from home, extended time away from loved ones, and stress due to job demands make substance abuse among truck drivers a common problem. When forced to drive for extended periods, which often include overnight shifts, the combination of being under the influence and being tired means that the potential for crashes significantly increases. FMCSA statistics indicate that this is a common factor in nearly 20 percent of all truck accidents that occur each year.

Contact Us Today for Help

At the Johnston Law Firm, we hold truck drivers and the companies they work for accountable for accidents and injuries you suffer in truck accidents involving smaller commercial vehicles and big rigs. Call us (503) 546-3167 or contact our Portland truck accident attorneys online and request a free consultation today.


Marc Johnston

Lead Attorney at Johnston Law Firm, P.C.

Based in downtown Portland, Marc A. Johnston is the owner and managing attorney of the award-winning, internationally-known personal injury law firm, Johnston Law Firm, P.C. Marc's career has been dedicated to representing the injured and individuals who have been treated unfairly by an insurance company. His focus on trial law creates the backbone of the Johnston Law Firm — a firm that is ready to go the distance in seeking justice for its clients.