The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), an agency in the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT), recently released some of the data from the first few weeks of operation of its Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse (). Since January 6, 2020, the clearinghouse has identified almost 8,000 positive substance abuse tests of Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) drivers.
“We’ve seen encouraging results from the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse, but there’s still work to do to ensure we identify more drivers who should not be behind the wheel. The clearinghouse is a positive step, and the agency continues to work closely with industry, law enforcement, and our state partners to ensure its implementation is effective,” FMCSA Administrator Jim Mullen said.
The clearinghouse is designed to provide FMCSA and employers the ability to identify drivers in violation of federal drug and alcohol testing program requirements who are prohibited from operating a CMV. Those drivers can then receive the appropriate evaluation and treatment before resuming driving.
The following are among those required to register for the clearinghouse:
- Employers of commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders who report drug and alcohol program violations that occurred since January 6, 2020
- Employers who conduct required queries that inform them whether employees have drug and alcohol program violations in their clearinghouse records
- Drivers who respond to employer consent requests or want to view their clearinghouse records when applying for a job
- Substance abuse professionals who report on the completion of driver initial assessments and eligibility to return to duty for violations committed since January 6, 2020
The clearinghouse, which currently has more than 650,000 registrants, is a secure online database that provides information about CDL drivers who have violated federal drug and alcohol testing program requirements. Ideally, the transportation industry would ensure that their drivers are drug and alcohol free, but as long as they continue to emphasize profits over all else, USDOT programs like these will help improve the safety of our nation’s roads.
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