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SAYING BYE TO 2020
As 2020 winds down I’d like to remind Salter’s Safety Assistance’s past, present, and future clients there is still a little time left to complete all of your necessary yearly requirements.
This includes, but is not limited to, annual MVRs, reviewal of annual MVRs, and Driver’s Certification of violations. These requirements help keep your driver’s qualifications files up to date.
DRUG AND ALCOHOL TESTING
By the end of the year, your company is responsible for meeting and completing its yearly random drug and alcohol testing requirements. This includes meeting the 50% testing rate for controlled substances and 10% testing rate for alcohol as per §382.305
Among the top 20 critical violations found during a DOT audit each year is the failure to conduct enough random drug and/or alcohol tests. Keep in mind that as the end of the year approaches holidays and vacations can impact your driver’s schedule and availability.
Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse Timeline
January 6, 2020
Mandatory use of the Clearinghouse went into effect. Employers must report certain drug and alcohol program violations and can conduct electronic queries in the Clearinghouse. Manual inquiries with previous employers are still required to cover the preceding three years.
January 5, 2021
Annual Query Deadline
All motor carriers and owner-operators are required to have all annual queries on ALL CDL drivers complete.
January 6, 2023
Clearinghouse Three-Year Mark
Employers must query only the Clearinghouse to satisfy the employer requirement to identify prospective drivers who have committed drug and alcohol program violations.
What types of drivers and employers will the clearinghouse affect?
All CDL drivers who operate CMVs on public roads and their employers and service agents. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Interstate and intrastate motor carriers, including passenger carriers
- School bus drivers
- Construction equipment operators
- Limousine driver
- Municipal vehicle drivers (e.g., waste management vehicles)
- Federal and other organizations that employ drivers subject to FMCSA drug and alcohol testing regulations (e.g., Department of Defense, municipalities, school districts)
Hours of Service changes
As of September 29, 2020, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) implemented changes to the hours of service (HOS) rules to increase safety and provide additional flexibility for commercial drivers.
Changes to Short-Haul Exception:
Changes to Adverse Driving Conditions Exceptions:
The definition of adverse driving conditions now considers the role of the driver:
Adverse driving conditions means snow, sleet, fog, or other adverse weather conditions, a highway covered with snow or ice, or unusual road and traffic conditions, none of which were apparent on the basis of information known to the person dispatching the run at the time it was begun.
Adverse driving conditions means snow, ice, sleet, fog, or other adverse weather conditions or unusual road and traffic conditions that were not known, or could not be reasonably known, to:
A driver immediately prior to beginning the duty day or immediately before beginning driving after a qualifying rest break or sleeper-berth period, or
A motor carrier immediately Bradshaws TransportationJeff,Bradshaws Transportationprior to dispatching the driver.
Changes to 30-Minute Break:
8 hours on-duty
30-minute break is satisfied by time:
8 hours of driving without at least 30-minute break
30-minute break is satisfied by time:
30 minutes must be consecutive but can be satisfied by any combination of the above activities.
Changes to Sleeper Berth Provision
Minimum of 8 hours are in the sleeper berth, and this period is excluded from the calculation of the 14-hour driving window
One off-duty period (whether in or out of the sleeper berth) is at least 2 hours long, and
The other involves at least 7 consecutive hours in the sleeper berth
The other rest period of 2 or more hours is included in the 14-hour driving window.
Both periods added together must equal at least 10 hours
When paired, neither time period counts against the 14-hour driving window