Cocaine use up during economic boom

Published: Aug. 21, 2018 at 7:08 PM CDT
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Drug tests show CDL drivers and oil field workers use more cocaine during an economic boom.

"You don't know, somebody could be on cocaine for like two days straight and they're just all drowsy and you don't know... one little move of a crane could cause a lot of problems not for you, but for your whole company", said Rodolfo Sotelo.

Sotelo is training to be a mechanic and knows the pressure put on people in the oilfield.

He is not surprised to hear cocaine is the most common drug used among oil field workers and CDL driver's during an economic boom.

Neither is Mike Pool, the owner of Neal pool Rekers, a local towing company.

"There is a drug problem in the Permian Basin right now. With the way the oil patch is right now, people are hiring people that probably shouldn't drive a car, much less a big truck", he said.

And that is all backed up by drug screen compliance, a local drug testing company, they say that among 7,000 drug tests done over a six month period, 56 actually had cocaine in their system.

"Unfortunately there are companies that will slide the drug test because they know the people can't, but they're in such a bind... they hire them knowing they wouldn't pass", explained Pool.

All CDL drivers are required to have a drug test before operating a commercial motor vehicle, but that doesn't take away the fear many drivers have of getting into a crash.

"It's something that stays on my mind at all times. Whenever we get on the road, anytime our family members get on the road, we worry and we always tell everyone to drive defensively to look around you and know your surroundings," concluded Jaymi Anderson.