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Welcome to Vegas Lawyer. This site is for people who were hurt in Nevada. Contact us for a free consultation. You may want to read the Las Vegas Personal Injury Law introduction on our home page. Also, you can get an overview of other claims like Wrongful Death, Auto Accidents, Slip & Fall, and Products Liability before you explore the Article below.

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Random Testing Of Truck Drivers

FMCSA requires all motor carriers operating vehicles that must be driven by someone holding a CDL to have drug and alcohol testing programs. Such vehicles include trucks with gross combination ratings of more than 26,000 pounds, trucks carrying specific hazardous materials that require the vehicle to be placarded in accordance with FMCSA regulations, and buses designed to carry 16 or more passengers, including the driver. Carriers must randomly test a fixed percentage of their CDL drivers for both alcohol (for which 10 percent of all drivers must be tested annually) and for a specified set of controlled substances (for which 50 percent of all drivers must be tested annually).

Random Testing Of Truck Drivers

In the case of alcohol, a driver is in violation of FMCSA regulations when the alcohol breath content is 0.02 grams per 210 liters of breath—equivalent to a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.02 grams per deciliter. Drivers testing at this level are not permitted to perform safety sensitive functions for at least 24 hours. In addition, drivers who test at the 0.04 g/dl level or higher must be evaluated by a substance abuse professional and undergo additional testing before being allowed to return to duty. For controlled substances, drivers are tested for marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, and PCP.

In addition to random testing, the FMCSA’s drug and alcohol testing regulations require motor carriers to perform the following types of non-random testing: pre-employment testing (for controlled substances only, and only if the driver has not recently been in a drug and alcohol testing program); post-accident testing (if the crash involved a fatality, or if the truck driver received a citation in a crash involving a towaway or hospital-related injury); and testing of any driver who is suspected by a supervisor of using drugs or alcohol while at work.

Random Testing

For the 2001 survey, 4,579 motor carriers were solicited. Of these carriers, 1,336 provided summary data for controlled substance random testing and 1,164 provided data for random alcohol testing.

The survey results suggest that the positive rates for controlled substance use and alcohol use have been approximately the same since 1997. (The differences in the year-to-year estimates are not statistically significant and cannot be shown to be a product of real differences in the population over time, as opposed to resulting from statistical sampling error.) Furthermore, the 2001 survey estimates do not suggest that the required random testing rate for controlled substances or alcohol should be changed. For the controlled substance random testing rate to be lowered (now at 50 percent of CDL drivers), the controlled substance usage rate estimated from the survey must be less than 1 percent for 2 consecutive years, in accordance with FMCSA regulations. For random alcohol testing, the testing rate is currently at the minimum allowable by FMCSA (10 percent). In order for this rate to be raised, the alcohol usage rate from the survey must be estimated to be more than 0.5 percent in a given survey year.

Non-random Testing

The number of tested drivers evaluated by the survey each year has been too small to produce reliable estimates of a usage rate for many of the non-random testing categories, particularly for alcohol testing. In 2001, the largest number of non-random tests captured by the survey was in pre employment controlled substance testing, for which 368,112 tests were reported. On the basis of those cases, it is estimated that in 2001, 2.0 percent of CDL drivers undergoing pre employment testing tested positive for controlled substances. In 2000 and 1999, the results were similar.

This information came from an
FMSCA online article.

*** Any law, statute, regulation or other precedent is subject to change at any time ***

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