NTSB wants drivers tested for use of synthetic pot

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is suggesting that truck drivers be tested for the use of synthetic marijuana.

NTSB animation of truck-bus accident in September 2014

The agency made two recommendations to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) following a September 2014 crash in which the driver of a tractor-tractor in Oklahoma struck a bus, killing four passengers and injuring five others.

The NTSB called for the FMCSA to determine how prevalent the use of impairing substances, especially synthetic marijuana, is among drivers, and to draft a plan to reduce their use.

In its second recommendation, the NTSB wants the FMCSA to help carriers address their drivers’ use of substances, including those not covered under current drug-testing guidelines.

While federal laws state that drivers are prohibited from operating a vehicle while impaired, they require testing for only a few substances, the NTSB said.

The NTSB also called on the American Trucking Associations, Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance and the Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association to educate their members about the dangers of synthetic drugs.

This video shows the NTSB’s recreation of the accident that prompted the call for new drug testing.