File photo
All carriers will still need to comply with the original deadline of Jan. 6, 2020.

FMCSA seeks to extend drug, alcohol clearinghouse deadline for states

Sept. 9, 2019
While states would have until 2023 to comply with the rule, implementation of the rule for fleets remains Jan 6, 2020.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has proposed extending the deadline for states to comply with the final rule establishing a federal drug and alcohol clearinghouse for truck drivers.

The updated proposal would give state agencies until Jan. 6, 2023 before they are required to request clearinghouse information before completing certain commercial driver's license (CDL) transactions. All motor carriers must still comply with the original deadline of Jan. 6, 2020.

FMCSA said in a Federal Register notice the delay is needed so it has time to create an interface between the clearinghouse and state driver licensing agencies. The agency is accepting public comments until Oct. 7.

All states have the option to voluntarily request clearinghouse information beginning on Jan. 6, 2020, the agency said.

As initial implementation of the final rule nears, FMCSA also recently announced it would charge carriers a $1.25 flat fee for each query of the clearinghouse. Fleets will have to check the database before hiring a driver and must use it once a year for drivers already working with the company.

FMCSA estimated the clearinghouse rule will eliminate about 900 crashes a year.

The agency also said it plans to issue another notice of proposed rulemaking in early 2020 addressing concerns from the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators regarding what states are supposed to do with the information and about the most efficient ways of electronically transmitting information.

Separately, Instructional Technologies (ITI) recently announced it had released a new drug and alcohol clearinghouse lesson to help fleets prepare for the implementation of the final rule.

About the Author

Neil Abt

Neil Abt, editorial director at Fleet Owner, is a veteran journalist with over 20 years of reporting experience, including 15 years spent covering the trucking industry. A graduate of American University in Washington, D.C., he began his career covering sports for The Washington Post newspaper, followed by a position in the newsroom of America Online (AOL) and then both reporting and leadership roles at Transport Topics. Abt is based out of Portland, Oregon.

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of FleetOwner, create an account today!

Sponsored Recommendations

Report: The 2024 State of Heavy-Duty Repair

From capitalizing on the latest revenue trends to implementing strategic financial planning—this report serves as a roadmap for navigating the challenges and opportunities of ...

Fleet Industry Benchmarks: How does your fleet stack up?

Discover how your fleet compares to industry benchmarks and gain insights from a 2024 Benchmarking Report on maintenance spend, turnaround time, and more. Join us to identify ...

Build a Tolling Program to Manage Toll Fees and Risks

Fleets looking to effectively manage their operational costs should consider their tolling costs. Download the PrePass whitepaper, “Build a Tolling Program to Manage Toll Fees...

Reducing CSA Violations & Increasing Safety With Advanced Trailer Telematics

Keep the roads safer with advanced trailer telematics. In this whitepaper, see how you can gain insights that lead to increased safety and reduced roadside incidents—keeping drivers...