Registration is open for the Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse (Clearinghouse), created by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). By January 6, 2020, FMCSA will require that employers of CDL drivers submit and review information about commercial drivers’ alcohol and drug violations. FMCSA created the Clearinghouse to share information about commercial drivers’ alcohol and drug violations among employers, state law enforcement, and SDLAs. FMCSA determined to extend the deadline to require State Driver Licensing Agencies to utilize the Clearinghouse until January 6, 2023; however, that would not impact the compliance deadline for motor carriers. The decision by FMCSA to extend the compliance deadline for state agencies is available here.
FMCSA requires that the drug and alcohol testing program violations of CDL holders must be reported to the Clearinghouse by January 6, 2020, and motor carriers must perform the required ‘queries’ – requesting information from the Clearinghouse – for prospective and current driver-employees. FMCSA requires all employers of CDL drivers to purchase a ‘query plan,’ which is a rated access to the Clearinghouse. Employers must request or submit information about drivers’ drug and alcohol violations before hiring the driver and at least annually for every CDL driver-employee. More information about the query process and purchasing plans is available from FMCSA.
FMCSA’s objective is to share information among employers and state officials to prevent some drivers from misrepresenting their violations to a new employer and/or in a new state. FMCSA compiled over 50 questions-and-answers to familiarize employers and drivers on the Clearinghouse; review the FAQ page here. More information about the Clearinghouse, including resources for employers as well as drivers, is available on FMCSA’s website. Please direct any additional questions to Sarah Reboli, Deputy Counsel, Regulatory Affairs at NPGA.