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Preparing for Your DOT Drug Test: What to Expect at the Collection Site
Scott Mogensen
4 mins read

JULY 26, 2017 – So, you’ve been called for a DOT drug test and are instructed to go to the nearest collection facility for testing. Now what?

Whether you’re going for a pre-employment, random or reasonable suspicion test, the process will be exactly the same. The DOT has a strict process that all of their approved collection sites must adhere to, which includes the following steps:

Step 1: Go Directly to the Collection Site

Once you arrive at the site, you will be required to provide a sample before you leave or risk receiving a “refusal to test.” You’ll be required to provide a valid ID to confirm your identity prior to giving a sample.

Step 2: Provide the Urine Sample

You will be taken to a secure collection site where all belongings (except for your wallet) are locked away, the water is turned off and all cleaning products/fluids are secured. Unless direct observation is required, as in a return-to-duty or follow-up test, you will be given privacy during the collection process.

Step 3: Observe Sample Preparation

When you’re finished giving your sample, you will hand the container to the collector who will split the sample between two containers and seal them with tamper-evident tape. You will observe this process and sign each piece of tape before you leave. It is important that the urine sample never leave your sight during this process.

Step 4: Provide Contact Information

Before you leave, you will be required to verify your name and date of birth, as well as to provide your contact information. This ensures that a Medical Review Officer (MRO) can get in touch with you to discuss your test results if needed.

Once the collection process is complete, your sample will be sent to a lab for analysis. The results will then go to the MRO for review. Depending on the initial results of your test, they may contact you to discuss recent medications or other possible explanations for a positive test.

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Know Your Rights

If your sample comes back positive, you do have the right to request a second test using the second bottle of urine prepared at the collection site. This request must be made within 72 hours of speaking with the MRO about your test.

What if You Can’t Provide a Sample?

As previously mentioned, once you go to the collection site, you must provide a sample before you leave or risk a refusal to test. If you’re unable to provide at least 45 mL of urine, you’ll be asked to remain in the testing area until you’re prepared to give a full sample. While you wait, you’ll be given the opportunity to drink plenty of fluids in preparation for your second collection attempt.

And if you still can’t go? Be prepared to have a medical evaluation to determine if there is an appropriate reason why you weren’t able to provide a sample. If no legitimate reason can be determined, you’ll be given a refusal to test.

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