This week on Taking the Hire Road, Jeremy Reymer, founder and CEO of DriverReach, is joined by a great friend of the show, Brandon Wiseman, owner and president of Trucksafe Consulting.
Trucksafe Consulting helps fleets develop innovative safety programs to minimize highway accidents through its online Department of Transportation-compliant Trucksafe Academy.
“I just didn’t think there was that much content out there that is directed specifically to safety managers and directors and small trucking companies about DOT compliance — how to interpret the regulations, which can be complex at times, and then apply them to your fleet,” Wiseman said.
When the Department of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse was put in place in 2020, transportation companies were required to run full queries on prospective drivers to see if there was any data that indicated drug or alcohol violations that would prevent the driver from operating a commercial vehicle legally.
Wiseman said the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in December reported there were 68,639 drug and alcohol violations reported to the clearinghouse in 2022, most of which were marijuana use.
It was also reported that 120,345 drivers were in “prohibited status” as of December 2022 — unable to operate a commercial vehicle due to previous drug and alcohol violations and who had not completed the regulatory “return to duty” process to clear them up.
Reymer noted the driver shortage number had been around the 80,000 mark toward the end of last year, well below the amount of drivers in that “prohibited status.”
Wiseman said the clearinghouse had a myriad of flaws in the beginning. One of the biggest was a lack of data in the query process, forcing carriers to manually contact previous employers regarding drug- and alcohol-related reports. “Sometimes, we were just shooting in the dark,” he said.
Upgrades to driver query processes have been made. Now if a driver’s status changes, carriers are notified in real time in their clearinghouse accounts.
Still, there’s much to learn about safety and compliance. Trucksafe is hosting a Trucksafe Bootcamp in Indianapolis on April 19 and 20 to provide participants the opportunity to “get in the nitty-gritty of DOT safety regulations,” according to Wiseman. Visit the website for more information on participating.
And to learn more about Trucksafe, visit trucksafe.com.
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