What is the FMCSA Clearinghouse?
The FMCSA Clearinghouse is a division of the United States Department of Transportation (DOT). FMCSA stands for Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The FMCSA has put together an electronic database called "The Clearinghouse". This database contains records of violations of drug and alcohol prohibitions made by DOT drivers.
Violations made by DOT drivers holding a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) could include the following:
- Failed alcohol breath testing results
- Positive drug test results
- Employee refusal to test for drug and alcohol testing
The following individuals are required to report information related to violations of drug and alcohol regulations to the Clearinghouse:
- Medical Review Officers (MRO's)
- Substance Abuse Professionals (SAP's)
- Consortia/third party administrators (C/TPA's)
- Other Service Agents
The Clearinghouse requires that employers place a query regarding any drug and alcohol violations made by current or prospective employees before allowing them to operate a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) on public roads. The employer is also required to query the Clearinghouse on an annual basis about any violations from drivers they currently employ.
Overall, the Clearinghouse provides the FMCSA and employers with the necessary tools to identify any employees who are currently prohibited from operating a CMV on public roads. The Clearinghouse helps to prevent drivers with previous drug or alcohol violations from moving from state to state with the goal of hiding these previous violations. The overarching goal is to improve the safety standards of the transportation industry and ultimately provide a better standard of safety for the public.
Employers need to have a clear understanding of their obligations under the Clearinghouse based on the requirements of the FMCSA final rule.
The FMCSA offers answers for all frequently asked questions around the CDL drug and alcohol Clearinghouse. These cover topics such as confidentiality and privacy of records, false information on records and making corrections to information that is held on record.
Written by Elly McGuinness
Elly has been inspiring people to make sustainable changes to their health, fitness and lifestyle for the past 15 years. She offers online solutions for people who are looking to get started on, or improve their health and fitness. She blogs regularly, writes for a number of health and well-being publications and is the published author of a holistic weight loss book.
More Q&As from our experts
- What certifications are available for employees involved in drug testing?
- What is a roadside drug screening?
- Are drug test results confidential under HIPAA?
- Leadership Assessment
- Adverse Action Letter
- Antitrust Acts or Laws
- Background Check
- Background Investigation
- Cause of Action
- Conditional Job Offer
- Consumer Report
Subscribe to the Workplace Testing Newsletter
Join thousands of employment testing and employee wellness professionals.
- Sleep Apnea in the Workplace: Your Comprehensive Guide to Proper Diagnosis
- DOT Drug & Alcohol Testing: Your Comprehensive Guide to Getting It Right the First Time
- An In-Depth Look at Drug Hair Testing
- 5 Ergonomics Concepts All Employers Should Know and Understand
- What Your Company's Drug and Alcohol Policy May Be Missing (and How to Get It Right)