Blog

 
     

Department of Transportation Creates Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse

By Michael Klazema on 12/21/2016
Employers who hire commercial drivers will have an easier way to check for drug and alcohol infractions in the future. Per a report from Mondaq, the United States Department of Transportation recently announced plans to create a Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse. The Clearinghouse will provide a database for employers to report or check drug and alcohol infractions for commercial drivers.

Under new rules established with the Clearinghouse, employers will be compelled to report any violations of the Department of Transportation’s drug and alcohol testing program to the Clearinghouse. The Department of Transportation requires drug and alcohol testing for companies that employ commercial drivers. Certain vehicles—such as large trucks—require a commercial driver’s license to drive. Employers with these types of vehicles in their fleet are subject to the DOT’s testing program. These employers will also be subject to the new Clearinghouse initiative.

Per coverage, employers will have to report commercial drivers to the Clearinghouse if they test positive for any drug use. In addition, reports are required for any alcohol tests that return a BAC of 0.04 or higher. An employer must report a driver to the Clearinghouse if they are aware that a driver is using alcohol or drugs on the job or if the driver declines to take a drug or alcohol test.

All requirements only apply to DOT-mandated drug and alcohol tests. If an employer chooses to run additional tests of their own volition, coverage explains, they are not legally required to report the findings to the Clearinghouse. If the employer is aware that a driver is using drugs or alcohol, but the usage is not impacting job performance, there is no obligation to report.

In addition to requiring employers to report information about commercial drivers to the Clearinghouse, the new Department of Transportation rules will require employers to run Clearinghouse searches. If an employer is hiring a driver to operate a vehicle that requires a CDL, he or she must run a query through the Clearinghouse database. As coverage explains, the database will help these employers to find out which drivers have histories of potentially dangerous alcohol or drug use. The Clearinghouse will inform employers about whether a driver has gone through the DOT’s required rehabilitation process.

As the DOT explained, the goal of the Clearinghouse is to make reporting and background checks for drug and alcohol use more effective in the commercial driving industry.

The requirements surrounding the Clearinghouse will not affect employers or drivers immediately. The Clearinghouse still needs to be built and employers will not have to start complying with the new rules until January 2020.

Sources: http://www.mondaq.com/unitedstates/x/551656/Health+Safety/DOT+Creates+CDL+Drug+And+Alcohol+Clearinghouse+Imposing+Employer+Reporting+And+Query+Obligations

Tag Cloud
Categories
Recent Posts

Latest News

  • January 15 A viral news story at The Cleveland Clinic has reignited the debate over social media background checks. The hospital recently fired a medical resident with a history of anti-Semitic tweets.
  • January 10 To remain a competitive employment option for retail workers, Best Buy will begin offering childcare options for parents. 
  • January 07 The rise of the "gig economy" was rapid, and questions about safety for users of these new services grew along with the industry. Background check policies in the gig economy can be unclear or unevenly applied, leading to barriers for some seeking jobs.
  • January 04 A new service that offers background checks for babysitters has come under fire for racial bias, invasion of privacy, and non-compliance with FCRA requirements. Predictim has paused its launch due to controversy.
  • December 20 Trust between patient and practitioner is a critical part of a strong healthcare system. An investigation uncovered hundreds of doctors practicing in new locations after giving up their licenses following serious mistakes.
  • December 13

    As the food truck fad proves it has staying power, many local governments have looked for ways to protect their communities without constraining economic activity. The effort to strike the right balance is ongoing.


  • December 11 The Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General criticized a migrant youth detention center on the border for not running the proper background checks. Federal law requires the facility to screen all employees with FBI fingerprint checks.
  • December 11 What are education verification checks and why are they important? We look at why and how employers confirm the education histories of the people they hire.
  • December 06 In a bid to combat money laundering and illicit funding sources for terrorists flowing through the country's real estate sector, Singapore's government now mandates background checks for buyers purchasing properties prior to development.
  • December 04 What is a reference check? How does it vary from a work history check? We explore these questions and others.