With support from our years of experience in transportation, we will take this opportunity to inform you of the alcohol and drug tests so that you know their importance. We frequently observe the uncomfortable reaction of many people when they talk about that topic, especially when they are selected for “random” drug testing.
Some people get angry, they think that it goes against them. They have even told me that if I have seen the face of a drunk or marijuana user. Once I had a driver ask me how I could ask that to a woman. Both women and men have the same obligation to take these tests if they are required.
Regardless of which company you work for, having a business license carries certain obligations, and alcohol and drug testing is one of them. These are required in the following cases: Pre employment, random, reasonable suspicion, return to work, follow-up test and after an accident.
We understand that doing a drug test is uncomfortable, regardless of whether you are safe and have nothing to fear. Therefore, staying informed will make you take the issue with a better attitude.
- Pre-employment: All truck driving companies, mandated by the FMCSA, have the legal responsibility to require commercial drivers to do the drug test. And they must verify the negative result before allowing a commercial vehicle to operate.
- Random: These drug tests are also part of the mandate and as of January 1, 2020, the percentage doubled to 50%. In other words, in the 4 randoms this year, half of the drivers will be required to do the drug test. Keep in mind that the chances of you being chosen are much higher now with this new regulation, so we recommend that you take it easy.
- After an accident: The companies must require the driver to do the alcohol and drug test if there were deaths, injuries, a vehicle was withdrawn by crane or if he received a fine for the accident. The alcohol test should be done up to 8 hours after the accident and the drug test up to 32 hours after.
- Reasonable suspicion: It is done when the person has obvious signs of drunkenness or under the influence of other drugs.
Whatever the circumstance for which you are going to do a drug test, we recommend that you be prepared. If you are taking medications, you should have them on hand and inform whoever asks for them, since some prescription medications can cause a false positive result in the drug test. As a consequence, you would have to schedule another test and present proof of the legality of the prescription.
Although drug tests may be uncomfortable for some, they are part of your obligations as a “class A” licensed driver. Keep in mind that its purpose is to avoid having to share the road with dangerous drivers and to keep the roads much safer. Have a nice day and a safe trip!