email password


How do I know if I am subject to the U.S. Department of Transportation drug and alcohol testing regulations? 

The Omnibus Transportation Employee Testing Act of 1991, established drug and alcohol testing regulations to ensure that aircraft, trains, trucks, and buses were operated in a safe and responsible manner. Generally, DOT regulations cover safety-sensitive transportation employers and employees. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has specific drug and alcohol testing regualtions. For Further details visit Regulations.

What is Pre-Employment/Pre-Access Testing?

Testing administered prior to the first time an employee performs a safety sensitive function for an employer. An employer must receive a controlled substances test result verifying a negative test result prior to an employee performing a safety sensitive function. (under USDOT regulations all Canadian Drivers operating in the U.S. must have a pre-employment/pre-access negative test result).

What is Random Testing?

Random testing is a process conducted by a scientifically valid computer based number generating program. Test are unannounced and immediate. The random selection process is unbiased, unpredictable and exceedingly tamper-Resistant. Random testing is a requirement under USDOT regulations for Canadian drivers operating in the U.S.

What is Post Accident Testing?

Post Accident Testing is the testing of an employee who is involved in an on-the-job accident (vehicle or otherwise) which may have involved human error which causes a fatality, a serious injury, or significant property damage. Post accident testing is time sensitive and should be carried out as soon as practicable following an accident.

What is Reasonable Suspicion/Reasonable Cause Testing?

Is testing required when a company has reasonable cause to believe that an employee may be impaired as a result of drug or alcohol use. Bahavioral observation may include the odor of alcohol on an employees breath; erractic behaviour; or an unsteady gait

What is Return to Work Testing?

Is testing required when a driver/employee returns to duty after having been determined to be in violation of company policy. After an evaluation from a Substance Abuse Professional (and any assistance program prescribed), in order to return to duty a driver/employee must receive an alcohol test indicating a breath alcohol concentration of less than 0.02 and or a verfied negative result for drug use.

What is Follow-up Testing?

Required after a rehabilitation for a drug and alcohol misuse problem and a return to duty test. Six unannounced follow-up tests are required within one year of evaluation and treatment by a substance abuse Professional. 

The employee must have a negative return to duty test before the employee can be allowed to return to work or perform safety sensitive duties.

When an Employer is inquiring about an applicant's previous DOT Drug and Alcohol test results is the employer required to send the inquiry via certified mail

No,certified mail is not required. The employer can make this inquiry through a variety of means, including mail (certified or not), fax, telephone, or email. 

However the employer must provide the former employer the signed release or a faxed or scanned copy of the employee's signed release.The former employer must respond via a written response (e.g. fax, letter, mail) that ensures confidentiality. 

The employer should document an attempt or attempts to make contact with the previous employers, no matter how they were made, so that it can show a good faith effort to obtain the required information

When a previous employer receives an inquiry from a new employer for drug and alcohol testing information, does the previous employer provide information it may have received from other employers in the past?

As an employer, when you receive an inquiry about a former employee, you must provide all the information in your possession concerning the employee’s DOT drug and alcohol tests that occurred in the two years preceding the inquiry. This includes information you received about an employee from a former employer (e.g., in response to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s pre-employment inquiry requirement). 

It is not a violation of Part 40 or DOT agency rules if you provide, in addition, information about the employee’s DOT drug and alcohol tests obtained from former employers that dates back more than two years ago. If you are an employer regulated by the FAA, this does not impact your requirements under the Pilot Record Act.

If an applicant admits to testing positive on or refusing to take a preemployment test within the past two years, must the applicant be held out of safety-sensitive duties if he/she did not complete the return-to-duty process (i.e., the SAP process)?

If the applicant admits that he or she had a positive or a refusal to test result on a pre-employment test, the employer is not permitted to use the applicant to perform safety-sensitive duties until and unless the applicant documents successful completion of the return-to-duty process. This Part 40 requirement applies whether or not the pre-employment positive or refusal occurred before, on, or after August 1, 2001. 

Should no proof exist that the return-to-duty process was successfully complied with, by the applicant, a current return-to-duty process must occur before the individual can again perform safety-sensitive functions.

When an employee leaves an employer for a period of time (but not exceeding two years) and returns to that same employer, must the employer once again seek to obtain information it may have received previously from other employers?

No. If the information received previously is still on file with the employer, the employer need not seek to obtain the testing data again. However, the employer must seek information from all other employers for whom the employee performed safety-sensitive duties since the employee last worked for the employer.

May the previous employer delay sending an employee’s drug and alcohol testing information to the gaining employer pending payment for the cost of the information

No. Part 40 specifically requires that previous employers immediately provide the gaining employer with the appropriate drug and alcohol testing information.No one (i.e., previous employer, service agent [to include C/TPA], employer information / data broker) may withhold this information from the requesting employer pending payment for it.