Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Drug Testing

The University of Florida is required by the Omnibus Transportation Employee Testing Act of 1991 (OTETA) to conduct physical examinations and alcohol/drug tests on all covered employees and volunteers. A covered employee or volunteer is anyone who must be available to operate or perform maintenance on university commercial motor vehicles. This requirement applies equally regardless of whether an employee or volunteer regularly performs the covered duties or simply acts as a backup.

Under OTETA, commercial motor vehicle means a motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicles used to transport passengers or property if the vehicle:

  1. Has a gross combination weight rating of 11,794 or more kilograms (26,001 or more pounds) inclusive of a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds); or
  2. Has a gross vehicle weight rating of 11,794 or more kilograms (26,001 or more pounds); or
  3. Is designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver; or
  4. Is of any size and is used in the transportation of materials found to be hazardous for the purposes of the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act (49 U.S.C. 5103(b)) and which require the motor vehicle to be placarded under the Hazardous Materials Regulations (49 CFR part 172, subpart F).

In addition to the initial examination and testing required by OTETA, the Act further requires that the university conduct ongoing random breath alcohol and urine drug tests on all employees and volunteers required to meet the criteria as listed in the first paragraph.

Please Note: Tracking the university’s commercial motor vehicle operators (CMVOs) presents a unique challenge. Therefore, departments are responsible for ensuring that employees/volunteers who meet the criteria as listed in the first paragraph are registered with Human Resource Services.

Questions regarding the CMVO Drug Testing Program should be directed to the Workers’ Compensation Office by calling 392-4940, or sending e-mail to workcomp@ufl.edu.

CMVO Policy Statement

This policy affirms the University of Florida’s commitment to providing an environment free of the abuse of alcohol and the illegal use of drugs and alcohol.

Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Drug and Alcohol Testing Policy

This policy affirms the University of Florida’s commitment to providing an environment free of the abuse of alcohol and the illegal use of drugs and alcohol in accordance with the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989 and its compliance with the drug and alcohol testing provisions of the Omnibus Transportation Employee Testing Act of 1991 (OTETA) as set forth in 49 CFR, Parts 40 and 382.

As established in OTETA and as set forth in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s regulations, all individuals who must operate or be available to operate a commercial motor vehicle in order to perform the duties of their jobs are considered to be performing a “safety-sensitive function.” This policy identifies individuals who perform such duties as Commercial Motor Vehicle Operators (CMVOs). Prior to and as a condition of employment in CMVO-identified positions, applicants are required by law and university policy to submit to federally mandated alcohol and drug testing. Once employed, CMVOs are required to submit to on-going random alcohol and drug testing as a condition of continued employment.

Under this policy, a CMVO who tests positive during an alcohol or drug test, performed in accordance with the provisions of federal law, shall no longer be eligible to perform CMVO duties for the university. In addition, an individual may forfeit his or her eligibility to perform CMVO duties for other specified violations of law as set forth in the university’s CMVO Safe Driver Policy.

Federal law defines a commercial motor vehicle as a motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicles used to transport passengers or property if the vehicle:

  1. Has a gross combination weight rating of 11,794 kilograms or more (26,001 pounds or more) inclusive of a towed unit(s) with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds); or
  2. Has a gross vehicle weight rating of 11,794 or more kilograms (26,001 pounds or more); or
  3. Is designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver; or
  4. Is of any size and is used in the transportation of hazardous materials as defined in this section.

The Human Resource Services administers the university’s CMVO Drug Testing Program. The Director of the Division ensures that the Program complies with all applicable federal, state and local laws and with all policies, procedures and regulations of the University of Florida Board of Trustees.

CMVO Safe-Driver Policy

The University of Florida has a legal obligation to ensure that its commercial motor vehicle operators (CMVOs), which include school bus drivers, have the mental and physical ability to perform their safety-sensitive functions. The university is further legally bound to ensure that its CMVOs are not impaired by the use of alcohol or drugs. Beyond that however, but equally as important, the university has a fiduciary responsibility to its students, faculty, staff, guests and other parties to ensure that the conduct of a CMVO, whether on and off the job, raises no issues of confidence or concern regarding that individual’s ability to perform the safety-sensitive functions of his or her job.

To that end, a current or prospective CMVO whose actions constitute misconduct as listed below shall be subject to the consequence listed for such conduct. “Misconduct” as used herein means: “conduct, on or off working hours, that adversely affects the employee’s ability to continue to perform his/her safety-sensitive functions, or which adversely affects UF’s ability to carry out its assigned mission.”

  • Misconduct: Testing positive on a UF CMVO drug or alcohol test.
    • Consequence: Loss of privilege to operate university-associated vehicles and motorized equipment from the date of the positive test.
  • Misconduct:
    • Conviction, nolo contendere /guilty plea, or adjudication of guilt withheld for any offense involving a controlled substance.
    • Suspension of driving privileges resulting from impairment or intoxication caused by alcohol or drug use.
    • Failing to immediately report to the CMVO Drug Testing Program Office any citation received from law enforcement involving drugs or alcohol.
    • Operating a vehicle without a valid license.
    • Motor vehicle violations involving the operation of a school bus or occurring in a school zone.
    • Failing to immediately report to the CMVO Drug Testing Program Office any citation received from law enforcement involving a moving violation.

    Consequence: Loss of privilege to operate university-associated vehicles and motorized equipment.

  • Misconduct: Receiving more than one traffic law conviction for a moving violation during any consecutive twelve (12) month period.Consequence: Progressive discipline up to and including loss of privilege to operate university-associated vehicles and motorized equipment.

Please note that a department is not obligated to provide work to an employee facing disciplinary action for a violation of any process, procedure, regulation or regulation enforced by the university’s CMVO Drug Testing Program.