With the new Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse rules come new enforcement tools for FMCSA, making it easier to identify non-compliant carriers. Because penalties for non-compliance can be stiff for both the carrier and the driver, several carriers have partnered with STC to conduct a detailed review of drug testing policies to ensure compliance with federal regulations and to be prepared to answer tough questions should an audit arise.
These reviews have revealed some confusion and policy language inaccuracies about what’s required and when. Ultimately, STC believes the new Clearinghouse rules will result in safer highways by making it easier to identify drivers with drug or alcohol problems and force them to seek help or exit the industry. However, this can only be true if carriers are following all of the testing program rules in parts 40 and 382.
Here’s a suggestion you may not have thought of–when asking current drivers to sign the newly required limited query consent form, carriers should consider including the newly required Clearinghouse policy language (in part 382), a quick refresher of important FMCSA testing rules, and maybe even the penalties for non-compliance to make sure everyone understands the rules and what’s at stake.