Truck Drivers – New DOT Drug Screening Impositions Making Their Way Into Trucking

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Truck Drivers Drug Screening:

In WASHINGTON, DC, truck drivers will soon face oral fluid monitoring for illegal substances under a new U.S. regulation. Health, and Human Services Agency the Department of Health and Human Services.

The introduction of oral fluid specimens into the Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Drug Testing Programs emerges as discussions on developing a procedure for hair testing continue.

The order, which was released late October but only began to be enforced Jan. 1, allow and require federal agencies, including the Department of Transportation, to obtain and analyze an oral fluid specimen as part of their drug testing programs.

DOT published a notice in the Federal Register, DOT and other agencies are required to develop guideline-based programs that set standards for oral fluid testing.

The department stated that the regulation is revising the provision to collect only a specimen of urine that has existed since the guidelines first appeared in 1988.

The adjustment became necessary because several products appeared on the market, it added, making it easier to fake urine samples.

The department stated, “The scientific basis for the use of oral fluid as an alternative specimen for drug testing has now been broadly established.”

It is expected that DOT will take several months to establish a standardized oral fluid testing program.

If hair testing is approved, these tests are likely to have a significant impact because tests from a person’s head of hair follicle can assess substance use over a three-month period. We can detect a range of substances from cannabis, cocaine, ecstasy and heroin.

“The proposed Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Drug Testing Using Hair has been written and submitted to the (White House) Office of Management and Budget for review,” added a speaker for Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

A statement said the law was held up by ongoing research and legal issues which have been under scrutiny since Congress passed the legislation in 2015.

In its latest move to improve road safety, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has doubled the random drug screening limit to 50 percent of driver positions for commercial truck drivers.The agency’s Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse program went into effect this month as well.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance has been pushing for a zero tolerance drugs and alcohol rule.

It has advised the federal government to enact mandatory drug and alcohol monitoring for truck drivers, saying the report by the Ontario auditor general on regulation of commercial vehicles supports this case.

Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk said in her annual report the lack of drug and alcohol monitoring is a safety issue.

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