DOT Drug Testing Guide People Need to Know

What is the Department of Transportation drug screening? These types of tests are introduced and conducted by the United States Department of Transportation with guidelines and standards are the benchmarks for employment drug screening.

Before a company can recruit a potential applicant, they need to screen them for any illegal substance abuse. The Department of Transportation standards guides the procedures of these testing. These are mandatory for every company operating in the United States.

DOT screening procedure

Workers are tested for the use of illegal substances and alcohol. Samples like urine or blood are collected by authorized DOT clinics or agencies and immediately sent to their laboratories. Special kits are used to help collect urine or blood samples from company employees.

These kits need to be in strict compliance with the regulations set by the Department of Transportation. There are separate collection sites in a company, which is separated from sample collection. Only these sample sites may be used to help collect samples from employees.

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There are times when the collection area may be situated outside the office. Private collection companies need to make sure that the right security measures are observed. They have the right, experienced, and enough personnel, enough testing kits and other materials, the proper facilities, the right equipment, and supervision to conduct sample collection the Department of Transportation guidelines. Only the facility staff and the employee are allowed to be in the room at the time of the sample collection.

Forms used

The CCF or the Custody and Control Form is issued and used by the FDT department. It is used to document every collection of the test sample with precision from a company’s employees. This form should not have crossed expiry dates and should be in a carbonless manifold, five-part format. No part of the Custody and Control Form can be modified or revised by the collecting firm.

Necessary information for billing or related situations can be written out of the Custody and Control Form border. Essential information like the employee’s complete name, contact number, mailing address, as well as fax number of the company or the employer should be written on the Custody and Control Form.

Refusal to the test

In certain situations, employees may fail to turn up for their schedules sample collection. There is a time limit to wait for their attendance. If this time limit is crossed, employees are notified that they have refused the scheduled drug screening.

No delays

Sample collections of the Department of Transportation screening need to happen with no delay. Once employees arrive for the screening, the procedure needs to start immediately. If alcohol testing is also being conducted, samples need to be collected after the scheduled alcohol assessment. The collecting firm needs to make sure that these procedures are followed at all costs and at all times.

Final procedures

Once the test samples have been collected, employees are required to sign certifications on the Custody and Control Form. Employees also need to mention their complete name, date of sample collection, birth date, as well as their contact information like mailing address and home phone or mobile phone numbers. In case employees refuse to sign the certification or don’t want to furnish their contact information, the collecting firm should mention this in the Custody and Control Form remark section.

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Department of Transportation workplace drug screening errors

The DOT has a strict alcohol and drug screening policy for all companies and agencies under their department. The policy defines regulations and rules like which personnel is covered when to administer the screening, up to procedures to follow in case employees have positive drug exam results.

That is why only experienced professionals are allowed to manage the department alcohol and drug test. But there are instances when collecting companies commit errors during the procedure. In 1997, the United States Government Accountability Office or GAO performed a series of undercover operations and found out that a lot of the collecting sites they visited didn’t follow proper protocols set by the governing body and that cheating can be possible in these screening sites.

The Government Accountability Office findings led the department to provide solutions that help emphasize the prevention of cheating on these drug testing. After some time, the agency still reports that collecting sites are still committing a lot of errors during the collecting process. Listed below are some of the errors found by the agency officials and their suggested resolution to avoid these notable errors:

CCF received by the firm are illegible – It is necessary that collecting firms check every form and make sure that the writing is legible and have the right information before sending them out. Forms with light writings need to be deleted before sending them via fax machines.

Maintenance, Repair, and Operating, as well as employers, were receiving their Custody and Control Form copies, even after multiple form requests – According to DOT regulations, collectors need to send a copy of their Custody and Control Forms not more than 24 hours or the next working days after the collection. They also need to keep copies of the Custody and Control Forms for at least one month or 30 days.

Collecting firms fail to mark the ID in the Custody and Control Form indicating which transportation the test sample is for (Federal Aviation Administration, Federal Motor Carrier Safety, etc.) – Collecting firms are advised to post notices and reminders for collectors to see since it is not a new step in the screening process.

Specimen labels are not correctly signed will still on the Custody and Control Form – According to the Department of Transportation rules and regulations, labels need to be signed whole when it is still on the specimen bottle.

Collecting firms do not adequately inform people about the rules and regulations upon leaving the site – People who leave the site after the assessment has begun will be counted as refusing the screening, except for people undergoing pre-employment tests.

Let these mistakes be a perfect reminder that it is imperative to facilitate the right training or re-training of collection firms to make sure that they do all the steps the right way. These sites must also make sure that their area follows the regulations and guidelines set by the government to guarantee the quality of examinations and the validity of results.