CCJ Daily Dispatch, June 9: FMCSA gives fleets flexibility in drug tests amid COVID recovery

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Updated Jun 11, 2020

Trucking news and briefs for Tuesday, June 9, 2020: 

FMCSA allowing drug-testing flexibility in driver re-hires
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has issued a temporary waiver that allows fleets to forgo pre-employment drug testing for drivers who have participated in a controlled substances testing program that meets the requirements of 49 CFR part 382 within the previous 90 days of hire or rehire. Current regulations limit that time period to 30 days.

The waiver is effective from June 5 through Sept. 30. The full waiver can be seen here.

FMCSA said that as fleets begin to recall drivers who were furloughed, laid off or otherwise not working for more than 90 days due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the costs of screening those drivers would be detrimental to employers. The waiver is meant to “provide relief from the administrative burdens and costs associated with administering the tests and allow them to return drivers to the workforce in a more efficient manner,” the agency noted.

“This problem is further compounded by the reduced availability of controlled substances testing resources due to continued facility closures or other testing impediments caused by the COVID-19 public health emergency,” FMCSA added.

Ten Wyoming rest areas with 80 truck parking spaces closing
The Wyoming DOT is set to close 10 rest areas across the state due to budget cuts announced by Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon. The closures will go into effect June 15.

The rest areas that will close include Lusk on U.S. 18; Guernsey on U.S. 26; Greybull on U.S. 14-16-20; Moorcroft on Interstate 90; Star Valley on U.S. 89; Ft. Steele on I-80; Sundance on I-90; Upton on U.S. 16; and Orin Junction and Chugwater, both located on I-25.

The closure of the 10 rest areas will eliminate roughly 80 truck parking spaces in the state, according to WYDOT Public Affairs Manager Doug McGee.

“Although these rest areas will close, motorists will still have access to facilities in neighboring communities,” Reiner said. “Each of the rest areas that are closing are within a reasonable distance of a town that has facilities for the public.”

DriverTech now offering Drivewyze weigh station bypass in ELD
ELD provider DriverTech is now offering Drivewyze PreClear weigh station bypass as part of its in-cab system.

DriverTech offers the DT4000, which features a front-facing dashcam, navigation system and more.

In addition to weigh station bypass opportunities at more than 800 locations in 47 states and provinces, Drivewyze is also providing rest area alerts during the COVID-19 pandemic, giving drivers “open” or “closed” notifications in states that have adjusted rest area parking.