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Monitoring to Maintain a Safe Workforce
Foley
4 mins read

SEPTEMBER 19, 2019 – How safe are your drivers?

As a DOT-regulated business, there are steps you must take upon hiring new drivers (as well as annually throughout their employment) to ensure they’re operating safely on our nation’s roadways. But are these steps enough? And are you certain that the driver you ran an annual MVR on last month hasn’t been involved in a serious accident or received a violation since?

Meeting the minimum DOT requirements will keep you compliant, but it won’t necessarily help you build the safest fleet of drivers for your company. Nor will it help improve your CSA score, which will be impacted by their unsafe driving habits.

The best way to ensure you’ve got the best possible drivers for your business is to monitor them on an ongoing basis. That way, when a drug and alcohol or CMV violation pops up, you’ll know about it right away.

Motor Vehicle Report Monitoring

An MVR Monitoring program will keep a continuous pulse on the MVRs of each driver you employ so that you know immediately when a change has been reported on their report. Each time an update has been found, you’ll be provided with the driver’s most recent Motor Vehicle Report so you can review the change. Although not all of this information is negative (you’ll know when their medical card has been updated, for example), it will ensure that you know almost immediately when the driver receives a CMV violation, their CDL is revoked or if they were involved in a serious motor vehicle accident.

Without a monitoring program in place, you might only find out about these issues during the annual MVR check – which could be many months after the violation occurred. Or worse, when a driver is caught operating with a suspended license.

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DOT Clearinghouse Monitoring

When the DOT Clearinghouse opens in just a few months, you’ll also be able to more closely monitor your drivers for drug and alcohol violations – something that is becoming increasingly important as drug positivity rates continue to climb. Although your drivers are already enrolled in a random drug and alcohol testing program, if they drive for other carriers, they could get a violation with that company that you never learn about otherwise.

A monitoring program would look something like this: you partner with a third-party DOT background screening company that runs limited queries on each CDL driver you employ on an ongoing basis to check for new information on their Clearinghouse record. When new information is found, you’ll be immediately alerted and the driver will be asked to give consent for a full Clearinghouse query to be run. This will provide a detailed look into the violation(s) that occurred.

If the driver doesn’t give consent, you’ll be required to pull them from safety-sensitive functions within 24 hours.

Setting Up a Monitoring Program

As we mentioned above, you’ll want to work with a DOT background screening partner to manage your monitoring program – both because of the work involved in carrying out a successful program and the federal privacy requirements that must be met any time you run a background check on an employee. Here at Foley, we’re experts in both DOT compliance and background screening regulations. To learn more about our monitoring programs and how they can help you maintain a safe workforce, please contact us here or give us a call at (860) 815-0764.

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