Archive for May, 2011

Can a collector mark through pre-printed employer, MRO, collection site, and/or laboratory information on the CCF if that information is not accurate for a particular collection?

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011

•Yes. When the collector has no “blank” CCFs and the CCFs on-hand contain inaccurate pre-printed employer, MRO, collection site, and/or laboratory information, the collector is permitted to “line through” the inaccurate information and insert legibly the proper information.
•The likelihood of a collection site having CCFs with inaccurate information increases with unexpected collection events (e.g., employee arrives unannounced for post-accident testing).
•If the specimen will be sent to a laboratory different than the one pre-printed on the available CCF, it becomes important for the collector to modify the CCF so that it reflects the name and address of the laboratory to which the specimen will actually be sent. It is also important for the collector to line through any pre-printed billing code and insert the appropriate one, if it is available.
•Finally, laboratories should honor collection site requests to provide an adequate number of “blank” CCFs for use during unexpected collection events. It is important to note that the DOT permits overprinting or pre-printing of CCFs in an effort to streamline the entire testing process, not to limit the distribution of the forms to collection sites.

Can a driver be qualified if he is taking Methadone?

Friday, May 20th, 2011

No. CMV drivers taking Methadone cannot be qualified.

Global Safety Network Offers Online Training Courses

Monday, May 16th, 2011

Global Safety Network is committed to assisting companies in administering their s DOT substance abuse testing programs. GSN offers highly regarded training programs that are designed to help meet the DOT training requirements for supervisors and safety sensitive employees.

A company may only have a limited number of people who need training or may possibly have supervisors who are spread across the country. Online training courses offer an excellent solution to these problems and more. There is no need to spend money sending  employees to an offsite facility for training. Also, training can be completed at the pace of the student and a certificate is presented at end of the training.

One of the featured online courses available is “A Supervisor’s Guide to Reasonable Suspicion Testing” initial and refresher training.  An online demo is available at GSN Online Training

Special features are available from GSN:

• Companies can easily add their policies, procedures and contact information.
• Each course license includes “A Supervisor’s Guide to Reasonable Suspicion Testing” manual on CD.

Contact Global Safety Network toll free at 866-792-9808.

Bill Would Require Drug Testing of Welfare Recipients

Friday, May 13th, 2011

From The Nation: Rep. Charles Boustany, a Republican representing a rural area of Louisiana, introduced without fanfare a bill that would require drug testing of anyone on—or applying to—the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.

TANF, formerly known as welfare until Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich overhauled the program in 1996, provides cash assistance to low-income families with children. But as Greg Kaufman noted yesterday, the Clinton-Gingrich “reforms” resulted in a dramatic decrease in the proportional number of families eligible for help, because of many different barriers erected by states that dole out the assistance. Only 28 families out of every 100 in poverty receive TANF benefits.

Boustany’s  bill would require states to “implement a drug testing program for applicants for and recipients of assistance” under TANF. It is similar to a proposal by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) last summer that went nowhere in the Senate after many Republicans failed to support it.

Drug testing TANF recipients is already a popular idea in many states. The policy group CLASP says that 27 states have proposed mandatory, suspicionless drug testing for those who receive TANF benefits or other forms of public assistance.

In Florida, the  legislature passed a bill that requires TANF drug testing, and Gov. Rick Scott (R) is expected to sign it this week. The Missouri Senate gave initial approval to a similar bill in late April.

Boustany’s bill was referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means, of which he is a member, and chairman of its Oversight Committee. If passed out of committee for a House vote, it could face a tough road—as noted, Hatch’s bill died a quick death last summer after several moderate Republican Senators balked. Boustany is stepping very lightly so far, especially for a member that’s guaranteed to lose his seat to redistricting in the next Congress. On the day he introduced the drug testing bill, his office put out five press releases—none related to the measure.

What information is an employer required to provide concerning SAP services to an employee who has a DOT drug and alcohol regulation violation?

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

An employer must provide to each employee (including an applicant or new employee) who violates a DOT drug and alcohol regulation a listing of SAPs readily available to the employee and acceptable to the employer, with names, addresses, and telephone numbers. The employer cannot charge the employee any fee for compiling or providing this list. The employer may provide this list or provide it through a C/TPA or other service agent.

FMCSA Survey Shows Increase in Safety Belt Use Among Commercial Truck and Bus Drivers

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

According to FMCSA’s Safety Belt Usage by Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers Survey, the number of commercial drivers that are wearing safety belts has increased by 14 percent since 2007. The 2010 survey observed 26,830 commercial drivers operating medium- to heavy-duty trucks and buses at 998 roadside sites nationwide. The survey found that safety belt use for commercial drivers and their occupants was higher, 80 percent, in states where law enforcement may stop drivers for not wearing a safety belt, versus 72 percent in states with weaker secondary enforcement belt use laws.

A regional breakdown showed that safety belt use rates for commercial drivers and their occupants were highest in the West, at 82 percent, compared with 79 percent in the South, 73 percent in the Midwest and 69 percent in the Northeast.

FMCSA Completes Compliance Sweep of Moving Companies in Nine Major Cities

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

Three household goods moving companies are facing civil penalty fines of $25,000 each as a result of a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) enforcement sweep which took place in nine major U.S. cities from March 14-18, 2011. The companies are Guardian Moving & Storage of Los Angeles, California; Lightning Van Lines, Inc. of San Leandro, California; and Viking Moving and Storage, Inc. of Oakland, California.

The sweep, in which 37 FMCSA and state investigators conducted compliance reviews of 67 moving companies, was part of the agency’s year-round Household Goods Strike Force initiative designed to protect the public from fraudulent moving companies. The sweep targeted high-risk moving companies in Los Angeles and San Jose, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Phoenix, Arizona; New Orleans, Louisiana; Miami, Florida; and Atlanta, Georgia.

“We are committed to protecting the public from unscrupulous movers that attempt to operate unsafely,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “We want these carriers to know that there are serious legal and financial consequences for evading federal regulations.”

The comprehensive compliance reviews conducted by federal and state investigators looked for regulatory violations such as failing to relinquish possession of a household goods shipment (hostage load), collecting fees more than the original binding estimate and failing to provide consumers with an arbitration process.

“FMCSA is committed to raising the bar for safety and closing cases on rogue household goods movers,” said FMCSA Administrator Anne S. Ferro. “We will do this by keeping the focus on safety and on improving service to the American public, one safe and successful move at a time.”

Consumers can report problems with moving companies by calling FMCSA’s nationwide complaint hotline at 1-888-368-7238 (1-888 DOT-SAFT) or by visiting http://nccdb.fmcsa.dot.gov.

Nearly One-Fourth of Adults Requesting ADHD Treatment May Be Faking Symptoms

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

From the Partnership at Drugfree.org:  A new survey suggests that almost 25 percent of adults who seek medical treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are exaggerating or faking symptoms, to get their hands on stimulant medication such as Ritalin or Adderall.

MSNBC reports that the survey of 268 patients found that 22 percent of adults who said they suffered from ADHD either didn’t have the disorder at all or tried to make their symptoms appear worse. Lead author Paul Marshall, who reported his findings in the journal The Clinical Neuropsychologist, said that some students want access to ADHD medication to help their concentration and focus, while others use it to get high. He used patient interviews and questionnaires that were designed to catch people who might be faking or exaggerating symptoms.

The article explains that ADHD medications appear to stimulate the brain, increasing levels of chemicals associated with attention and behavior. The drugs have a calming effect on people with ADHD but can be dangerous in people without the disorder, the article notes.

North Dakota Becomes 31st State to Ban Texting While Driving

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today praised North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple for signing a tough new law banning texting while driving. The law makes North Dakota the 31st state to ban texting behind the wheel.

“North Dakota has taken an important step to eliminate distracted driving,” said Secretary LaHood. “Thanks to the bill signed today by Governor Dalrymple, North Dakota roads will be safer for everyone.”

The new law, which becomes effective August 1, will impose a fine of $100 on people caught texting while driving.

With the addition of North Dakota, 31 states, the District of Columbia, and Guam have now banned text messaging by all drivers. Eight states, the District of Columbia, and the Virgin Islands have prohibited all hand-held cell phone use while driving.

May is National Bike Safety Month

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

From the DOT Secretary BLOG: “Today, I am happy to let everyone know that May is National Bike Safety Month. As summer approaches, millions of Americans will climb onto their bikes to enjoy one of the most enjoyable ways to get some exercise, have some fun, and get where they need to go.

Whatever your reason for saddling up, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and AAA want you to ride safely. To help spread this important message, they’ve joined together to launch “Roll Model,” a campaign reminding parents and caregivers to set positive examples that encourage children and teens to ride safely, this month and every month.”