CDL Clearinghouse is Here: What Collectors and Alcohol Testing Technicians Must Do
A couple of months ago we wrote about the new CDL Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse, touching on some of the responsibilities of drug and alcohol professionals. In case you missed that article which outlines what the CDL Clearinghouse is and its purpose, you can read that article here. However, with the looming January 2020 launch date of the CDL Clearinghouse, we wanted to take some time to detail what is required of Urine Drug Screen Collectors, Breath Alcohol Testing and Screening Test Technicians when performing a drug or alcohol test on a CDL holder. Before we cover the requirements, let’s clarify the who, what and when of these new requirements.
What is a CDL and who is a CDL Holder?
CDL stands for Commercial Driver’s License. Holders of a CDL are most likely truck drivers, both interstate and intrastate. Simply put, CDL holders can be truck drivers driving 18-wheel trucks across state lines or drivers of smaller rigs transporting goods only within a given state. CDL holders can also be bus drivers transporting passengers across state lines.
What is the CDL Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse?
The FMCSA’s CDL Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse is a national database containing information pertaining to DOT drug and alcohol violations for holders of Commercial Drivers Licenses. All drug and alcohol violations must be reported to the Clearinghouse by MROs, employers, substance abuse professionals, consortia/TPAs and other service agents.
Employers will be required to query the CDL Clearinghouse for new and prospective employees for any previous drug or alcohol violations before allowing them to operate a commercial vehicle. They will also be required to query the database annually for each employed CDL license holder.
Collector, BAT and STT Requirements
Beginning January 6, 2020, all urine drug screen professionals, breath alcohol testing technicians and screening test technicians must document the CDL driver’s license number and state of issuance in the Employee Identification section of the testing form. Urine drug screen professionals will document the CDL number and state of issuance in section C of the Custody and Control Form. BATs and STTs will document this information in section 1 line B of the alcohol testing form. According to the FMCSA, you will no longer use the employee’s social security or employee ID number in these sections, only the CDL information.
Where do I get the CDL Information?
The employer is responsible for providing the CDL information to the testing technician. If the employer does not supply this information, you must contact the employer to obtain it. If the employer is not available, we recommend asking the employee to see their CDL license. If the employee cannot produce their CDL, we strongly recommend documenting in the remarks section of the form that the “CDL information was not provided by the employer and could not be obtained from the employer or employee”. Only in this scenario do we recommend using the social security or employee ID number in the identification field on the form, so that it does not remain blank. If the CDL information was not documented on the testing form but you made the recommended remarks on the testing form, the MRO or Employer will know they must obtain the CDL information in order to report any positive tests to the CDL Clearinghouse.
AlcoPro’s online Specimen Collector, BAT and STT courses have been updated to reflect the new CDL Clearinghouse requirements. We strongly recommend all training instructors immediately begin training their testing technicians on the new requirements so that your services and testing programs are ready to adopt the new procedures.
For BATs using the Alco-Sensor RBT IV, you can type in the numeric values of the CDL using the RBT IV keypad. You will not be able to enter any alpha characters on the keypad. You must still hand write the full CDL number and state of issuance on line B of the ATF.