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Drug and Alcohol Testing

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FRA Post Accident Determination Application

As part of FRA’s drug and alcohol testing program, certain accidents/incidents are subject to Part 49 CFR 219, Subpart C Post Accident Testing requirements. Because theses accident/incidents are rare and so high profile, it can be difficult to make the final determination to "bring out the Tox Box".

For years, I remember carrying around Lamar Allen's FRA Post Accident Testing flow chart. I had a copy in my purse, my backpack, my car, in every room of the get it - this paper flowchart was everywhere. I give a big kudos to the FRA. Not only have they created a powerful tool to aid in the determination of FRA Post Accident Testing, but they have also reduced the late-night phone calls for help....and save a few trees.

13b8d5_784f7337c5da4b1b89c58ddf116e17fd~mv2FRA's Post Accident Test Determination App was made for railroad managers and their regulated contractors providing them the resources to make more rapid FRA Post-Accident Testing determinations. This Application is available for use on Apple and Android devices. (Search for PATT on the Apple App store or on Google Play.)

I strongly encourage you, if you have not already, to add this App to your phone.

Background: FRA’s 49 CFR Part 219, Control of Alcohol and Drug Use contains requirements for post-accident testing if certain conditions are met. This application is intended to aid railroads and their contractors in determining when a qualifying accident has occurred that requires Part 219 Subpart C testing. The FRA’s post-accident testing program has been the cornerstone the agency’s drug and alcohol testing efforts since 1985 and pre-dates the publication of most of the rest of Part 219 and the USDOT’s testing procedures regulation, 49 CFR Part 40.

Part 219 Subpart C defines the train accident/incident thresholds that require testing. This post-accident testing helps FRA accident investigators determine whether the use of drugs and alcohol by involved railroad employees or contractors may have contributed to the cause or severity of a particular accident. The goal of this application is to aid regulated employers (railroad or contractor) in determining whether a rule-triggering post-accident testing event has occurred as well as who to test; and that the decision to test is made quickly after reasonable inquiry and good faith judgment by an on-site supervisor. Blood and urine collections from surviving employees/contractors must be completed within for (4) hours of the accident with the proper supplies and forms; and blood, urine, and tissue collections from fatally injured personnel must be completed as soon as practicable. This application is likewise intended to protect employees from inadvertent incursions upon their right-to-privacy represented by tests that are performed in error.

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