FMCSA eases drug and alcohol enforcement

by Today's Trucking

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) says it will exercise discretion in enforcing random drug and alcohol testing to help the struggling supply chain during Covid-19.

The agency said this week that the motor carrier industry continues to experience operational disruptions caused by the pandemic public health emergency declared in March.


It said in some regions, employers subject to drug and alcohol testing may be unable to comply with certain requirements due to the impacts of the emergency.

“In recognition of these barriers to full compliance in some locations, the agency may exercise discretion to determine not to enforce the minimum annual percentage random testing rates for drugs and alcohol,” Acting Administrator Jim Mullen said in a notice issued Monday.

“FMCSA emphasizes, however, that employers capable of meeting these requirements must continue to do so.”

As of January, the agency had raised the random testing rate for controlled substances for commercial drivers to 50% from the current 25% of driver positions.

Monday’s announcement is the latest in a series of steps taken by the agency to help the trucking industry during Covid-19.

Early last month, it granted furloughed drivers a three-month waiver from certain pre-employment testing requirements.

The waiver will be effective until Sept. 30.

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