USDOT Proposes Adding Oral Fluid Testing to Transportation Workplace Drug and Alcohol Testing to Combat “Employee Cheating”


USDOT Proposes Adding Oral Fluid Testing to Transportation Workplace Drug and Alcohol Testing to Combat “Employee Cheating”

USDOT Issues Proposal

On February 27, 2022, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register entitled “Procedures for Transportation Workplace Drug and Alcohol Testing Programs: Addition of Oral Fluid Specimen Testing for Drugs” to add the oral fluid testing procedures to the existing urine drug testing procedures for safety-sensitive transportation employees subject to drug testing under Part 40 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

This proposal by the USDOT will give employers a choice that will help combat employee cheating on urine drug tests and provide a more economical and less intrusive means of achieving the safety goals of the program. The proposal includes other provisions to update the USDOT’s regulation, and to harmonize, as needed, with the new Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Drug Testing Programs using Oral Fluid established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Other Factors and Comment Period

In addition to adding oral fluid as a drug testing method, the USDOT proposes to clarify certain Part 40 provisions that cover urine drug testing procedures; to remove provisions that no longer are necessary; to add clarifying language to other provisions like updated definitions and web links; and to update provisions to reflect issues that have arisen in recent practice. Since 2004, when HHS previously considered oral fluid testing, the scientific viability of that testing has advanced.

Comments for the proposal should be submitted by March 30, 2022. They should be sent by mail to Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE, West Building Ground Floor Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001, or submitted online to the Federal eRulemaking Portal at To ensure proper docketing of comments, please include the agency name and docket number DOT-OST-2021-0093.

ClearStar Transportation Background Checks

ClearStar – a leading provider of Human Capital Integrity℠ technology-based services – offers transportation employment background checks that provide a full suite of services (background checks, drug/clinical tests, physicals, reasonable suspicion, and post-accident), full Department of Transportation (DOT) support, and the largest drug test collection site network with more than 9,000 locations nationally. To learn more, visit

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    Thomas Ahearn - News Blog Editor and Public Relations Specialist

    Thomas Ahearn is our News Blog Editor and Public Relations Specialist. Our News Blog provides information about the background check industry to employers, HR professionals, recruiters, and consumers. ClearStar's News covers a variety of topics including Ban the Box, credit reports, criminal records, data breaches, drug testing, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), E-Verify, Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), HR technology, identity theft and fraud, jobs reports, lawsuits involving screening, Millennial workforce, privacy issues, social media background checks, and workplace violence.

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