Concerns about Collectors and Clearinghouse Requirements

The DOT specimen collector does not register in the new Clearinghouse and does not query or report to the Clearinghouse.  However, I do have concerns about DOT specimen collectors and breath alcohol technicians (BAT’s) in regard to the new Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse rules.  The concern is about refusals to test.

The company Designated Employer Representative (DER) is responsible for making official determinations of a refusal to test.  For refusals occurring at the collection site, the DER relies on documentation from the collector. Often DER’s are not receiving a phone call from the collector about a refusal and many times not receiving the documentation or incomplete inaccurate documentation.  This is where the concern is in relation to the new Clearinghouse rules.

For refusals to test the employer has a new responsibility to report refusals to test to the Clearinghouse.  The report of a refusal requires complete documentation of what happened to make the refusal determination. I have listed below at the bottom of the page situations where the donor is refusing the test at the point of collection.  The clearinghouse is very clear on documentation to be provided regarding employer determined refusals:

  • Documentation, including, but not limited to, electronic mail or other contemporaneous record of the time and date the driver was notified to appear at a testing site; and the time, date and testing site location at which the employee was directed to appear, or an affidavit providing evidence of such notification
  • Documentation, including a certificate of service or other evidence, showing that the employer provided the employee with all documentation reported regarding the refusal
  • In the case of a refusal based on the donors (applicant or donor) admission of adulteration or substitution of the specimen; the employer may report only those admissions made to the specimen collector

As previously stated, I have a major concern that collectors are not providing correct, complete and accurate documentation regarding refusals.  In some cases, no documentation at all. There needs to be communication with the employer on every collector situation where there is a refusal to test and follow up documentation.  This is a training area that needs to be emphasized in all collector training programs.    

Refusal Situations at Point of Collection   

  • Fail to appear at a urine collection site when directed to report (collection site is aware of a scheduled collection and notifies employer of a No Show)  
  • Fail to remain at the urine collection site
  • Fail to provide a urine specimen
  • Fail to permit a monitored or observed urine collection
  • Fail or decline to take an additional drug test the employer or collector has directed
  • Fail to cooperate with any part of the urine collection process
  • For an observed collection, fail to follow the instructions to raise and lower clothing and turn around
  • Possess or wear a prosthetic or other device that could be used to interfere with the collection process
  • Admit to the collector to having adulterated or substituted the specimen
  • Fail to appear for an alcohol test when directed to report (collection site is aware of a scheduled alcohol test and notifies employer of a No Show)  
  • Fail to remain at the alcohol test site for testing
  • Fail to provide an adequate amount of saliva or breath
  • Fail to undergo a medical examination or evaluation as the employer has directed as part of the insufficient breath for breath alcohol test (Shy Lung)

Professional urine specimen collector training for DOT drug testing is avaialble at My Drug Test Training.