Kathy Close, Editor - Transport Safety
October 24, 2022
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is removing the drug and alcohol history questions from the safety performance history inquiries effective January 6, 2023. The only means of learning of violations occurring under FMCSA testing (Part 382) is a query of the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse (DACH).
The database will contain records relating to FMCSA testing violations occurring since its launch three years prior. Clearinghouse queries, unlike the safety performance history records request, must be completed before the individual drives for you. Consent for the pre-employment query is provided through the driver’s personal Clearinghouse account.
Motor carriers must continue to ask DOT drug and alcohol questions of former employers where the driver was subject to Part 40 testing under another mode (air, pipeline, transit, maritime, rail). This information is pertinent and must be investigated since a violation under another mode carries over to highway (FMCSA). The driver must provide specific written consent before the former employer may respond.
If the motor carrier learns that a driver has a DOT testing violation (under any mode) and did not complete the return-to-duty and/or follow-up program, the motor carrier must contact the former employer to determine where the process left off. This may involve requesting copies of records, such as the substance abuse professional (SAP) follow-up testing plan, completed follow-up tests, and the like. Of course, the driver must provide specific written consent for the release of such records. This has always been the case and continues going forward.
Motor carriers will continue to obtain the following information via a safety performance history inquiry from FMCSA-regulated employers where the driver worked in the past three years:
Between now and January 6, 2023, motor carriers must make sure they are ready for the change to the safety performance history investigation.
Those who vet drivers at the motor carrier need to know:
If the motor carrier uses a third party to help assemble the driver qualification file and/or manage the drug and alcohol program, the carrier must ensure the service agent is aware of the new requirements.
To learn more about how J. J. Keller can help you with the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse (DACH), contact us today at 888.473.4638 or fill out the form below.
You may also be interested in:
What is a Return-to-Duty Test?
How to Request a Clearinghouse Query
Clearinghouse FAQs for Owner Operators
Imagine the damange that an impaired driver operating one of your commerical motor vehicles (CMVs) could inflict on the general public. Those companies that have experienced this can tell you firsthand about the potenital aftermath: lawsuits, DOT crash investigation, fines and penalties, and the publicity nightmare.
Talk with a compliance specialist today at: 888-473-4638 or fill out the form and we'll get in contact with you.
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