The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is providing leeway to commercial transportation organizations including school districts and private bus companies that can’t satisfy random alcohol and drug testing of its drivers during the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak.
The Notice of Enforcement Discretion Determination issued on July 6 notes that some motor carriers are unable to meet the minimum annual percentage rates for administering random tests, which for the 2020 calendar year is 10 percent of the average number of an organization’s driver positions for alcohol and 50 percent for drugs, because of driver furloughs, testing facility closures or restricted hours of operation.
Motor carriers that are unable to meet the random testing thresholds must document for the FMCSA why they could not meet the requirements.
“In recognition of these barriers to full compliance in some locations, the [a]gency may exercise discretion to determine not to enforce the minimum annual percentage random testing rates for drugs and alcohol, and the requirement that each employer ensure that the dates for administering random drug and alcohol tests are spread reasonably throughout the calendar year … ,” the notice states. “FMCSA emphasizes, however, that employers capable of meeting these requirements must continue to do so.”
FMCSA added that the notice should not be perceived as suspending current random testing requirements.