House bill pushes drug testing truckers with hair sample

By CCJ Staff on

Rep. Reid Ribble (R-Wis.) introduced into the U.S. House this week a bill that would require the U.S. Department of Transportation to implement a pilot program to test the feasibility of using hair samples instead of urine samples to test commercial drivers of illegal drug use. 

As reported in August, major trucking companies and the American Trucking Association have been advocating for the option to use hair instead of urine for some time, and some carriers have implemented programs themselves in recent years. 

ATA released a statement supporting Ribble’s bill. “Hair testing, which research and experience shows can be much more effective than current, conventional sampling and testing methods, is the next logical step in this process and we thank Congressman Ribble for introducing this important legislation,” says ATA President Bill Graves. 

In CCJ sister site Overdrive‘s report from August, ATA said that its members who had used hair testing saw positive drug tests in 2.4 to 10.4 percent more drivers than when using only urine analysis.

7 comments
MASTERMECH48
MASTERMECH48

Why does it take the govt to force usage of this tech'gy. Been avail 20+ years and just now looked at??  Known to be optional any time. It is more accurate for time line/historical usage.

Madcow
Madcow

And it has nothing, like most measures, to do with any kind of safety.  A person could have been slipped a "pot" brownie over the holidays, and tested 3 months later and still shown up that he had been using, thereby disqualifying him/her.  Oh well, Oscar Wilde said it best..."There are two tragedies in life.  One is not getting what we want, the other is getting it."   Doesn't bother me so much when politicians and anti trucking groups dream this stuff up, but trucking organizations, so called, jump on the band wagon also as they have with EOBR's, Speed Limiters, and Sleep Apnea.   We have met the enemy, and he is us.

Ammon
Ammon

I think there will be a lot of bald truckers.

GeorgeGeissinger
GeorgeGeissinger

It would be much harder to cheat, walk in and "snip" it's over. No "I'm not in the mood"

RickGaskill
RickGaskill

Another political bill . A Republican Senator supporting the ATA hopes a bill will be supported by a Democratic majority that is funded by Teamsters . Not likely to pass . 

RickGaskill
RickGaskill

Ammon , the head isn't the only place they could get hair .