Municipalities must register with alcohol, drug violation database

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has developed an information clearinghouse to better ensure that drivers cannot conceal drug and alcohol violations by moving on to another job. There are no exemptions for municipalities.

The FMCSA Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse is a secure online database that will give employers, the FMCSA, state driver licensing agencies and state law enforcement personnel real-time information about commercial driver’s license (CDL) and commercial learner’s permit (CLP) holders’ drug and alcohol program violations.

An act of Congress directed the Secretary of Transportation to establish the Clearinghouse.

The clearinghouse will enable employers to identify drivers who commit a drug and alcohol program violation while working for one employer, but who fail to subsequently inform another employer (as required by current regulations).

FMCSA said that drivers are not required to register for the clearinghouse. However, a driver will need to be registered to provide electronic consent in the clearinghouse if a prospective or current employer needs to conduct a full query of the driver’s record. This will include all pre-employment queries beginning on January 6, 2020.

A driver must also be registered to electronically view the information in his or her own clearinghouse record.

Drivers who register before January 6, 2020, will have their clearinghouse accounts and contact preferences set up, allowing them to quickly respond to query requests from employers on or after January 6, 2020, FMCSA said.

Employers are required to enter data regarding drug and alcohol violations into the clearinghouse.  This includes, but is not limited to, violation, and substance abuse professional program completion.

The system is now open for registration.

Additional information about the clearinghouse is available here.