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Should I be concerned about
trucking license fraud in Seattle?

A: The answer to this question is "yes".

In the State of Washington, commercial truck drivers are required to go through a licensing process before piloting 18-wheelers and semi-trucks. This licensing process is by no means easy - it involves a combination of classes and training with the vehicle, to ensure that the driver knows how to operate it properly.

The logic behind this process and the burdens it imposes on would-be commercial drivers is obvious: large commercial rigs weigh several tons, and when operated improperly by an unskilled and untrained driver, they can cause extremely serious - or even fatal - accidents with other vehicles.

Even drivers who can muster the skill to drive a large rig without the mandated training will likely not know how to react appropriately to external dangers and distractions, such as hazardous road conditions or the mistakes made by other drivers. Moreover, truckers with licenses fraudulently obtained are not likely to observe laws governing the maximum number of hours behind the wheel, or to observe various mandated measures (such as log-keeping) designed to prevent accidents caused by truck driver fatigue.

Unfortunately, truck license fraud is a real phenomenon. This kind of fraud occurs either when a driver comes by a fake commercial license through illicit means, or via exams with falsified results.

In some U.S. states, where private testers are hired by the government to certify commercial truck drivers, the problem of trucking license fraud has become particularly acute: there are many documented cases in which corrupt testers have sold fake licenses to individuals unfit to drive trucks commercially.

In the Seattle area, there has been a particular problem with individuals fraudulently obtaining commercial licenses to carry hazardous materials. Conspiracy to possess fraudulent commercial driver's licenses for the purposes of transporting hazardous materials is a felony, under federal law.

The bottom line is this: proper licensing and training save lives, by keeping untrained and unskilled commercial drivers off the road and preventing avoidable accidents.

If you have recently been involved in a Seattle truck accident, contact a Seattle truck accident attorney without delay toll free at 1-800-318-0502 to learn more about your legal options.