According to a 2016 study from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), nearly 44% of drivers in fatal vehicle crashes tested positive for drugs. When you consider the sheer number of vehicles on the road in any given city in Arizona, this data underlies the importance of the United States Department of Transportation’s (DOT) drug and alcohol testing program. Part of the program involves drivers and other “safety-sensitive” employees to undergo drug testing at various points of their employment.
However, following these regulations can be a challenging task. In addition to ensuring that you and your employees aren’t using drugs and alcohol, finding a nearby testing location can also be a challenge.
At Fleet Drug Testing, we’re here to assist you in maintaining compliance with DOT regulations. Our team of experienced professionals offers a comprehensive range of drug testing services and programs. We can help you locate a convenient testing site in Arizona, whether you are passing through Phoenix, Tempe, or Flagstaff.
Regardless of your route in Arizona, our team is dedicated to helping you find a drug testing facility that will ensure your compliance with DOT regulations. Get in touch with us today to begin the process, or visit our enrollment page to explore the programs that best suit your needs.
The DOT is the primary federal agency responsible for keeping transportation safe and efficient throughout the country, including Arizona. Part of its responsibility is instituting a Drug and Alcohol Testing Program that all “safety-sensitive” employees must follow. This program requires regular testing for drugs and alcohol at certain times, such as:
- Pre-employment – This type of testing is done before a person is hired for a safety-sensitive job. It helps ensure that new employees are drug and alcohol-free before they start working in positions that could affect safety.
- Post-accident – When there is a work-related accident or incident, this testing is conducted to determine if drugs or alcohol may have played a role in causing the event. It helps understand if substance use was a factor in the accident.
- Random testing – This is when employees are selected at random to undergo drug and alcohol testing throughout the year. The DOT sets specific rates for how many employees need to be tested. Currently, 50% of employees are selected for drug testing, and 10% for alcohol testing. This type of testing is done to discourage substance use among employees and ensure a safer work environment.
- Return-to-duty – If an employee has previously tested positive or violated DOT drug and alcohol regulations, they must complete a return-to-duty process. This involves undergoing testing to demonstrate that they are no longer using drugs or alcohol and are fit to resume safety-sensitive duties.
- Follow-up – After completing the return-to-duty process, employees are subject to ongoing testing as part of their follow-up program. Follow-up testing is designed to make sure that the employee remains drug and alcohol-free in order to maintain their safety-sensitive positions.
The main goal of these regulations is to ensure that employees, especially drivers, are not under the influence of drugs or alcohol while working. However, regulations apply to a number of different types of employees, like:
- Truck drivers
- Bus drivers
- Air traffic controllers
- Ship captains and crew
- Train conductors
- Railroad workers
Further, the DOT has specific requirements for testing, including the substances that are tested for–currently marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, opioids, and PCP–and the use of urine samples. Positive results can have consequences, and often involves them being removed from safety-sensitive duties.
Not only does the DOT’s drug testing program require that testing take place, the agency also has strict measures in place regarding the process for testing. Part of the reason for this is to ensure accurate and uniform results, and it also has the added benefit of providing employees and the companies that they work for assurances that any testing will be done professionally and within compliance.
However, in order to better understand these requirements, it can be helpful to look at the DOT’s drug testing process so that you’ll know what to expect:
- Notification – The employee is informed that they need to undergo drug testing. They are made aware of the requirement and what it entails.
- Collection – A trained collector collects a urine or other sample from the employee. The collector ensures that the sample is collected in a proper and professional manner.
- Split Specimen – The collected sample is divided into two containers (A and B) and sealed in front of the employee. This process ensures that there are two separate samples for testing purposes.
- Laboratory Testing – The sample is sent to a laboratory that is certified by the Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) and the National Laboratory Certification Program (NLCP). The lab conducts the necessary tests on the sample to determine if there are any drug or alcohol substances present.
- Review by a Medical Review Officer (MRO) – The laboratory provides the test results to a Medical Review Officer (MRO). The MRO reviews the results and contacts the employee if further clarification is needed or if there are any concerns.
- Reporting – The MRO reports the test results to the employer. The employer is informed of the outcome of the drug test.
- Action based on results – Depending on the test results, appropriate actions are taken. If the results are positive, the employee may be removed from their safety-sensitive position and may need to complete a substance abuse treatment program before being allowed to return to work.
Ensuring the accuracy of your drug test results is crucial for both you and your employer. It’s not just about following the rules; it’s about keeping your business running smoothly and providing for your family. You know that as a safety-sensitive employee or manager of a transportation business, DOT regulations require drug testing. Thus, being prepared is the best way to approach them.
If you’re in Arizona and need to find a DOT drug testing location, our knowledgeable team at Fleet Drug Testing is here to assist you. We offer various programs designed to help you and your employer stay compliant with regulations. We have a network of certified drug testing facilities conveniently located throughout Arizona that meet all the necessary guidelines.
Our programs will guide you through the entire process, ensuring that you’re well-prepared for the test. Don’t compromise your safety or the safety of the public by underestimating the importance of DOT drug testing. Contact us today to find a testing location near you in Arizona.