3 Great Reasons HGV Medicals Look at Drug and Alcohol Abuse
All new drivers looking to gain their HGV license are required to do a standard HGV medical check. As it stands at the moment current license holders must undergo a medical exam on a regular basis in order to keep their HGV license valid. The medical entails the doctor looking for any signs or symptoms that would show drug or alcohol abuse. Although some drivers reckon that looking in to drink and drugs use is not needed and not appropriate for HGV drivers, but in reality it is more than appropriate to be looking in to this on a medical exam.
Alcohol and drugs while driving is very dangerous in any instance, and extremely dangerous if you were driving in any vehicle on the road. But when it comes down to HGV and other large commercial trucks, with the size and weight combined together it takes danger to a whole new level. It is a matter of we cannot have HGV or PCV drivers on the road if they are under any influence of drink or drugs full stop.
Fleet news UK recently reported the results of a brake and direct line survey on drug driving. From this data on the survey taken, we can offer the following three results/reasons the HGV driver medical looks at and should remain looking at drink and drug abuse:
7% Admit to Driving After Taking Drugs
It is shocking to have to face facts, but 7% of survey respondents admitted to driving at least once a month after having taken drugs. Given the nature of human beings to be less than honest with these kinds of surveys, the actual percentage may very well be higher. Stop a minute and just let that sink in.
If 7% of the drivers on the road at any given time have taken drugs in the recent past, that means one in every 14 drivers you encounter could be impaired. Those are not very good odds. If one of those impaired drivers just happens to be driving a lorry, the results of any subsequent accident could be devastating.
8% Admit to Being the Passenger of a Drug User
The second good reason for the HGV medical looking at drug and alcohol abuse is the fact that some 8% of the survey respondents admitted that they were probably the passenger of a drug driver within the last year. In other words, some of these survey respondents were not entirely positive that they had ridden with a drug driver, but they were fairly confident they had. Why did they not do something to prevent it?
16% Say They Would Ride with a Drug Driver
Lastly, 16% of the survey respondents said they would ride in a car with a drug driver. That number is absolutely astounding. To know that one out of every six people would risk their lives in such a reckless way shows just how serious the drug problem is.
It is clear that drug and alcohol abuse is a very real problem among UK drivers. It should never be a problem for professionals. That is why the HGV medical looks at alcohol and drug use, just as it should.