Commentary from Tom Nitza regarding the CVSA D&A Clearinghouse ruling.  Thanks to Tom and best wishes during his retirement from Thorn Valley.

From Tom Nitza:

During a roadside inspection the Clearinghouse database will be queried. A driver found to be operating in a prohibited status will be placed out-of-service.

The first response would be that if a motor carrier is using a driver after they’ve tested positive, then shame on them and the driver should be placed out-of-service. However, it’s possible that the motor carrier might not have been aware of the positive test. How can that be? Let’s say I decide to change motor carriers and take a pre-employment drug screen, which I fail. They, of course, will not hire me and the positive test will be reported to the Clearinghouse. However, the positive test will NOT be reported to my current employer, and there’s no incentive for me to tell them.

Since motor carriers are required to query the database annually for each of their qualified drivers, I would be found out eventually and the company would most likely dismiss me. The real question here is “should motor carriers query the database more often than the annual requirement?” This question is really similar to “should motor carriers run an MVR on a driver more often than the annual requirement?