DOT Alcohol Testing
The DOT agencies : Federal Aviation Administration (aviation); Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (trucking); Federal Railroad Administration (rail); Federal Transit Administration (mass transit); Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (pipeline); United States Coast Guard (USCG) (maritime).
Each agency has industry specific regulations which in total cover approximately 12.1 million transportation employees who perform safety-sensitive functions. These regulations spell out who is subject to testing, when, and in what circumstances. These regulations can be found on our web site at: http://www.dot.gov/ost/dapc/oamanagers.html.
Alcohol in The Workplace
Clearly, alcohol and drug abuse by employees cause many expensive problems for business and industry. These problems include lost productivity, injuries, and an increase in health insurance claims.
According to the The National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information, the loss to companies in the United States due to alcohol and drug-related abuse by employees totals $100 billion a year.
These staggering numbers do not include the cost of diverting company resources, resources that could be used for other purposes such as addressing substance abuse issues. Nor does it include the "pain and suffering" aspects, which cannot be measured in economic terms.
However, costs can be measured in the expenses of absenteeism, injuries, health insurance claims, loss of productivity, employee morale, theft and fatalities. According to NCADI statistics alcohol and drug users:
- Use three times as many sick days.
- Are more likely to injure themselves or someone else.
- Are five times more likely to file worker's compensation claims.
One survey found that nine percent of heavy drinkers and 10 percent of drug users had missed work because of a hangover, six percent had gone to work high or drunk in the past year, and 11 percent of heavy drinkers and 18 percent of drug users had skipped work in the past month.
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