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FMCSA opens registration for drug and alcohol clearinghouse

Trucking companies can now register for the drug and alcohol clearinghouse being administered and operated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the agency announced on October 1.

Registration will be required in order for authorized users to access the clearinghouse once it is fully implemented on January 6, 2020. Those users include:

  • Drivers who hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or commercial learner’s permit
  • Employers of CDL drivers, including those who employ themselves as owner-operators
  • Consortia/Third-Party Administrators
  • Medical Review Officers
  • Substance Abuse Professionals

FMCSA emphasized that while commercial drivers aren’t required to immediately register, they must be registered to respond to an employer’s request for consent prior to a pre-employment or other query being conducted.

“As this Congressional mandate is enacted, FMCSA’s goal is to ensure drivers, employers and everyone who will be using the clearinghouse are registered as efficiently and effectively as possible,” said FMCSA Administrator Ray Martinez, adding, “we strongly encourage all [commercial motor vehicle] stakeholders to get registered in the clearinghouse now.”

Registration is free. An FMCSA source told FreightWaves that there will be a subsequent announcement when clearinghouse query plans are open for purchase.

An alert issued by the law firm Scopelitis urged carriers to not only begin registering given the impending January 6 deadline, but they should also:

  • Ensure that their federally mandated drug and alcohol testing policies contain all necessary details about the clearinghouse.
  • Develop procedures for running initial queries for prospective drivers and annual queries for existing drivers.
  • Communicate with drivers to ensure they will be properly registered through the clearinghouse if required.

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John Gallagher, Washington Correspondent

Based in Washington, D.C., John specializes in regulation and legislation affecting all sectors of freight transportation. He has covered rail, trucking and maritime issues since 1993 for a variety of publications based in the U.S. and the U.K. John began business reporting in 1993 at Broadcasting & Cable Magazine. He graduated from Florida State University majoring in English and business.

One Comment

  1. These politicians could give a sh..
    It’s all about a money crab.
    The same could be said about the cost of finger printing CDL holders at very high cost to people that make their living with their license.
    The should have criminals reprint every 5 years and charge them.
    What bs.

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