The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has extended the deadline for comments on the agency’s proposal to establish a clearinghouse for drug and alcohol testing violations for CDL drivers. 79 Fed. Reg. 22467 (April 22, 2014).
On April 15, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association petitioned the agency for a 60-day extension of the comment period. The FMCSA acknowledged OOIDA’s concerns, and after reviewing the request, FMCSA decided to grant a 30-day extension, to May 21, 2014.
NPTC already filed its comments in the rulemaking, stating its support for the clearinghouse but requesting:
- The rule should also include an employer’s actual knowledge of misuse of drugs or alcohol, based on the employer’s observation of the driver, as well as admissions of misuse of drugs or alcohol by a driver.
- The rule should eliminate the current requirement in 49 CFR §391.23(a)(2) that a prospective employer make “investigation of the driver’s safety performance history with Department of Transportation regulated employers during the preceding three years.” Alternatively, NPTC said the FMCSA should eliminate the requirements in §391.23 to investigate safety performance history three years after the effective date of the final rule, when there is an equivalent amount of data in the clearinghouse on each driver as would be captured in the inquiry to a prior employer.
- Fees to access the clearinghouse should include a subscription service to allow larger carriers to obtain an unlimited number of records over the course of the subscription year, in addition to a transaction-based fee for those carriers that will use the clearinghouse only infrequently.
- The rule should specify that background screening companies that are conducting employment-related checks on CDL drivers on behalf of motor carriers are allowed access to the clearinghouse.
The FMCSA should set out the standards used and the types of state or local reporting rules that would be deemed “inconsistent” with the final rule, and list those specific state reporting requirements that the agency believes are preempted by the federal requirement.
- Posted by admin
- On April 28, 2014
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