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FMCSA decision lowers random testing rates for carriers

December 24, 2015

AYR, ONTARIO – Low positive testing rates have prompted the US Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to reduce the rate at which a US Department of Transportation (DOT) regulated carrier must randomly test for drugs in a year, starting in 2016. 

In a news release issued Monday the 21, the FMCSA announced that as of January 1, it will lower the required random testing rate for controlled substances from the current 50 percent to 25 percent. The random testing rate for alcohol remains at 10 percent. 

The decision was based on three years of random testing data that showed a positive rate of less than one percent.

According to regulations, when the positive rate for controlled substances is less than one percent for two years in a row, the FMCSA has the option to lower the minimum annual testing rate. It did not do so last year.

The FMCSA says that if at any time the positive rate for controlled substances exceeds one percent, the testing rate will revert back to 50 percent.

DriverCheck is still evaluating the impact of this decision on our DOT regulated clients and will send further communications in the New Year.