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CDL Alcohol and Drug Testing

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Testing is performed to deter employees who perform safety-sensitive functions related to the operation of vehicles requiring a CDL licensed driver from reporting to work or remaining on the job under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances/drugs.

Employees who are required to hold a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) based on duties performed are subject to testing. A CDL is required for

  • Vehicles with a gross weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds
  • Vehicles designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver
  • Vehicles used to transport hazardous materials and are required to be placarded in accordance with the Hazardous Materials Transportation Administration

All testing is conducted by a certified testing facility that complies with the federal regulations pertaining to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act.

Post Employment Offer

After an offer (contingent on receiving a negative result from drug test) is made, but before a candidate begins employment in a position requiring a CDL, a drug test must be conducted and results received. Human Resources coordinates the testing; however, the hiring department is responsible for test costs.

Applicants who test positive are removed from consideration for employment and are provided information on how to receive an evaluation for assistance from a substance abuse professional (SAP). The applicant is responsible for any costs associated with evaluation and treatment services.

The University does not conduct pre-employment alcohol testing.

Human Resources verifies with the final candidate whether he or she has had a positive alcohol or drug test or a refusal to test within the last 3 years. If there is a positive response, the applicant may be removed from consideration for employment or the hiring department may choose to allow the applicant to be hired with proof of completion of return to duty requirements from their previous employer.

The hiring department is responsible for ensuring that the candidate completes (once hired) or completed the substance abuse treatment program, including follow up drug testing, as directed by the evaluation recommendation from their original substance abuse professional.

The final candidate must meet with a Human Resources representative to verify the past 3 years of employment in which a CDL license was required and to have the candidate sign a Release of Information Form. This form is sent to the candidate's employers from the past 3 years to obtain previous drug and alcohol testing results and other related information. If the candidate does not grant permission for the release of this background information, he or she is not eligible for employment.

Post Hire

The final candidate may begin employment with the University before Human Resources receives the drug and alcohol testing and background information from previous employers. Human Resources completes the drug and alcohol background check as soon as possible but not longer than 30 days from the new employee first performing safety-sensitive duties.

If a previous employer reports a drug or alcohol violation, the employee will face disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, if he or she had not provided this information to Human Resources during the pre-employment verification process.

Random Testing

CDL-licensed employees are subject to random testing on a regular basis to comply with federal regulations. Human Resources notifies the hiring department of the need for testing. The employee must cease performing safety-sensitive duties and report to the collection or testing facility immediately. If the employee is not at work, the employee should not be given prior notice, but should be notified to go for testing on return to work.

Reasonable Suspicion Testing

If a supervisor who has received required training under Department of Transportation (DOT) rules observes behavior or other signs of possible alcohol or controlled substance abuse immediately before, during, or immediately after performing safety-sensitive duties, the employee is directed to undergo testing. The person observing the behavior must notify Human Resources of the need for testing and complete the Reasonable Suspicion Drug and Alcohol Testing form.

The employee is provided with transport to and from the collection or testing facility and arrangements will be made for transporting them home. Tests should be performed immediately and must be conducted within 8 hours for reasonable suspicion of alcohol abuse and within 32 hours for reasonable suspicion of controlled substance abuse. The employee must not engage in safety-sensitive duties until negative test results are received.

Post-Accident Testing

After an accident involving

  • A fatality or
  • Where the employee receives a moving traffic violation and
  • Either bodily injury occurred requiring immediate medical treatment away from the scene or
  • A vehicle incurred disabling damage

the employee must be tested for alcohol and controlled substances. Tests should be performed immediately following the accident; however, the alcohol test must be conducted within 8 hours and the controlled substance test must be administered within 32 hours.

Positive Test Results/Return to Duty

If positive drug test results or alcohol tests of 0.04 BAC or greater are received, the employee must immediately be removed from safety-sensitive duties. Human Resources reports any positive drug and alcohol test results, other than pre-employment, to the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within 5 business days following the receipt of confirmation of a positive drug test.

In addition, the employee is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, under the University's policy for improper personal conduct. The employee is also provided with information to obtain a substance abuse evaluation by a substance abuse professional (SAP).

If allowed to return to work, the employee must complete the evaluation and any recommended treatment, and produce a negative test result prior to return. The employee is subject to a minimum of 6 follow up tests during the 12 months after return to duty. The University is not required to pay for rehabilitation or to hold a job for an employee.

If positive alcohol tests of 0.02 to 0.039 are received, the employee must be removed from safety-sensitive duties for 24 hours and then be evaluated by his or her supervisor for approval to return to duty. The employee is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, under the University's rules for improper personal conduct.

Refusal To Be Tested

All of the following are considered a refusal to be tested.

  • Failure to appear for testing
  • Not appearing for testing in a timely manner as determined by the employer
  • Leaving the collection site before testing is completed
  • Failure to provide a specimen
  • Failure to allow direct observation for reasonable suspicion
  • Providing an insufficient specimen without a valid medical reason
  • Failure to undergo medical examination when directed
  • Failure to cooperate with the testing process
  • Providing an adulterated or substituted specimen

Employees who refuse to be tested are subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, and will be referred for evaluation by a substance abuse professional (SAP).

Diluted Specimens

Verified positive diluted specimens are treated as positive test results. The University will require employees with negative dilute specimens to undergo immediate unobserved recollection.

Split Specimen Testing

The collection or testing facility must perform a split specimen collection. If an applicant or employee tests positively for drugs, he or she can request a re-test using the split specimen. The applicant or employee will bear the cost of the re-test. If already employed, the individual will be placed on investigatory leave pending the results of the split test.

Training

Employees are provided information on testing policy and procedures including alcohol and controlled substance awareness information. Supervisors must receive initial training on the policy and procedures, including information on alcohol misuse and indicators of the use of controlled substances (reasonable suspicion). Additional training is required if there are changes to federal regulations.

Recordkeeping

Human Resources maintains pre-employment background checks for 3 years. Information released to other employers concerning current or previous employees is maintained for 5 years. Non-negative drug test results, alcohol tests of 0.04 BAC or greater, refusals to test, and SAP referral information is maintained for 5 years. Negative drug and alcohol tests are retained for one year.

Guiding Policies and Other Resources

Human Resources Guiding Policy Disclaimer

Policies, Regulations, Rules, Pre-Employment Testing: General and Commercial Driver's License Holders (CDL)

Drug-Free Workplace

Questions?

For more information, contact

  • Employment Services, 919-515-2135
  • Employee Relations, 919- 515-6575