on all orders over $75.
100% money back guarantee.
Support 24/7

What to Know Before DOT Drug Testing

DOT drug testing

Taking a drug test can be nerve-wracking, even if you only use controlled substances responsibly and appropriately. Knowing what to expect from a drug panel is one of the best ways to calm your nerves.

If you're facing Department of Transportation (DOT) drug testing, understanding the regulations and procedures ahead of time can help alleviate some worries and ensure things go smoothly. Here, we'll explain everything you need to know before DOT drug testing — from common questions about how the process works to potential outcomes and more. With this information on hand, you can be adequately prepared for whatever comes your way.

What Is DOT Drug Testing? 

DOT drug testing is a process that is used to test employees in certain industries for the presence of drugs in their systems. More specifically, the Department of Transportation requires that all employees who work in transportation-related fields be subject to drug testing.

The purpose of DOT drug testing is to ensure that employees are not impaired while they are working, helping to protect the safety of the general public and the employees themselves.

Because it is government-mandated, DOT drug testing is a highly regulated process, and specific guidelines must be followed. A certified lab must conduct the test, and a Medical Review Officer must review the results.

Who Is Subject to DOT Drug Testing?

DOT drug testing is required for a variety of safety-sensitive transportation jobs. Employees who work in positions that may impact public safety must submit to drug and alcohol testing as a condition of employment. This includes employees who work in the transportation, aviation, maritime, and railroad industries.

The DOT drug testing regulations are designed to protect the public's safety, covering many transportation jobs. Some of the positions that are subject to drug testing include bus drivers, truck drivers, railroad engineers, pilots, and air traffic controllers. The regulations also apply to workers in support positions such as mechanics, dispatchers, and loaders, whose job duties could impact the safe condition and operation of vehicles.

Employees who are subject to DOT drug testing should be aware of the process and what is involved. If you have any questions about DOT drug testing or how it might apply to you, be sure to speak with your supervisor or HR department.

Why Are Drug Tests Mandatory in Transportation?

The DOT drug testing program is important because it helps ensure the public's safety. Employees who work in safety-sensitive positions need to be sober and alert to perform their duties safely. For instance, truck drivers and bus drivers who are using drugs can risk the safety of other motorists on the road. Railroad workers and airline workers who are using drugs can also pose a risk to the safety of passengers.

By implementing a drug testing program, the DOT can deter employees from using drugs while working and reduce the risk of accidents due to DUI or DWI offenses. Drug and alcohol testing also helps identify employees who may be unfit to work and removes them from the workplace until they can get treatment.

What Do DOT Drug Tests Screen for?

DOT drug tests are designed to detect illegal drugs and the abuse of prescription medications that could impair a worker’s ability to perform their duties safely. As such, DOT drug tests can detect a wide range of drugs, including:

  • marijuana
  • cocaine
  • amphetamines
  • opioids

Some people may be concerned that they will test positive for a drug they took legally with a prescription. However, the DOT drug test is not designed to detect medications that are taken as prescribed. The test is looking for drugs that are not being misused, taken illicitly, or are not authorized for use in the workplace.

If you are taking a medication that could potentially cause you to test positive on a DOT drug test, it is important to talk to your employer about possible alternative accommodations. There may be other medications that can be prescribed that do not cause a positive test result. Generally, it is best to have this conversation before drug testing so that your supervisors are aware of potential positives on your test before the results come back.

When Is DOT Drug Testing Required?

DOT drug testing is often mandatory when starting a new position in one of the transportation industries covered under their guidelines. Employees who are subject to DOT drug testing must also submit to screening tests at random, and they may be subject to tests if there is reasonable suspicion that they are using drugs.

What If You Fail DOT Drug Testing?

If you fail a DOT drug test, there are a few potential consequences. One is that you could lose your job. If your employer is federally regulated, they must drug test all employees in safety-sensitive positions. If you can't pass the test, you can't work in that position.

Another consequence is that the government may fine you. If you're caught trafficking drugs, for example, you could be fined up to $250,000. You could also be subject to jail time. Finally, you could lose your driver's license if you're convicted of a drug-related crime.

Get the Answers You Need from Countrywide Testing

Whether you're looking for general information on drug testing or need at-home solutions to check whether prescriptions or other substances may show up on a drug test at work, Countrywide has the resources you need.

Countrywide Testing is an online provider of easy on-site drug tests. We offer an array of products for testing at home, individuals staying clean after rehab, workplace testing, healthcare emergencies, and law enforcement purposes. Our test kits are discreet, convenient, and affordable. Our lab is also accredited by SAMHSA, so you can rest assured your test results are subject to top industry standards.

For more information, just contact our team today.