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Not every truck driver is legally licensed

Truck safety is on the minds of a lot of people lately. We have written regularly about the issue because of the implications the issue has for victims when they suffer serious injuries or loved ones are killed due to truck driver negligence.

In one recent post we posed the question whether it serves the objective of motoring safety to allow drivers as young as 18 to drive semitrailer trucks interstate. That's something that's under consideration in Washington.

In another, we wondered whether attaching governors on trucks to limit how fast they can travel makes sense. And in conjunction with that, you could ask whether mandating greater accident avoidance technologies and truck data records might be the answer.

Well, we have an additional question to raise. How many truckers are there on the roads of Texas today who are hauling loads without being properly licensed to do so? Considering that it's no secret that there are individuals driving without valid personal licenses, it would seem safe to assume that there are truckers doing the same thing.

Indeed, if a recent story from the online version of Fleet Owner is any indication, it might be safe to think that there could be thousands of people on the nation's highways driving while license is invalid. In one case, the story describes how a crew in New York City apparently helped some 500 people cheat their way to commercial driver's licenses in the state between 2001 and 2012.

That was just in one city in one state. And the story suggests that cheating on tests for commercial licenses is big business in other locations.

To their credit officials in many states seem to be on to the practice and are watching out for it. Federal officials are concerned, too, because there's recognition that such schemes could be attractive to terrorists who might want to use trucks to pull off attacks inside the U.S.

From our perspective, the fraudulent licensing issue is one that may be of concern from a liability standpoint. Truck accidents nearly always result in serious or fatal injury. Victims have a right to seek compensation for physical and financial damages. And if a driver is operating an 18-wheeler under an invalid or nonexistent license, consulting an attorney is the best way to ensure all possible routes to recovery are identified.

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