“The greatest mistake to make in life is to continually be afraid you will make one.” 

-Elbert Hubbard

U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Drug & Alcohol Supervisor Training Guidance 

Have you ever received a notice stating the following? 

“Your Company is out of compliance.” 

“Don’t fail your DOT audit!” 

You are subject to a civil penalty up to $ 10,000 for being out of compliance.” 

More than likely the letter you received was sent from a private company that is aggressively marketing supervisor training to motor carriers. Neither FMCSA nor any other agency within the U.S. DOT is affiliated with or endorses the services offered by these companies. FMCSA is monitoring the marketing of training services by private entities, and is taking steps to ensure that these companies are not representing themselves as affiliated with or endorsed by FMCSA.   

What You Need to Know: 

  • 49 CFR 382.603 is the applicable regulation requiring supervisors of commercial motor vehicle drivers who operate vehicles that require a commercial driver license to take 60 minutes of training on the symptoms of alcohol abuse and another 60 minutes of training on the symptoms of controlled substances use (120 minutes in total).  The purpose of this training is to teach supervisors to identify circumstances and indicators that may create reasonable suspicion that a driver is using or under the influence of alcohol or drugs, supporting referral of an employee for testing.
  • If you operate vehicles that require a CDL on the public roads and you have more than one employee in the company, you are required to get DOT Supervisor Training. To verify if you are subject to the drug and alcohol regulations, please visit http://www.dot.gov/odapc/am-i-covered
  • Owner-operators are not subject to DOT supervisor training. However, you are still required to register with a consortium for DOT drug and alcohol testing.
  • Employers need to ensure that the required content is made available to all persons designated to supervise drivers. Information can be found at http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/drug-alcohol-testing/what-are-my-employee-and-supervisor-training-responsibilities
  • There is no requirement you go through the company that sent you a solicitation. Below are a few suggestions on how you can get all of your employees designated to supervise CDL drivers trained.
  • The Federal Transit Administration provides a reasonable suspicion training video at http://transit-safety.volpe.dot.gov/DrugAndAlcohol/Tools/ReasonableSuspicion.aspx
  • For more information on drug and alcohol regulations http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/drug-alcohol-testing/overview-drug-and-alcohol-rules
  • There is no requirement you go through the company that sent you a solicitation.