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IC
Top Member

USA
3413 Posts

Posted - 12/19/2006 :  6:31:33 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I got called in today for my THIRD random drug test this calendar year! The guy that parks next to me has only had ONE in 10 years on the job. Are they trying to tell me something? Sheesh, I'm a 53 year old grandpa! LOL

I'm just kidding....but if these tests are random (and I believe they are) then it's certainly possible for some people to get called in often and others almost never.

How do your operations conduct your drug testing? I think mine uses a computer program that randomly picks employee ID numbers...I've seen it used to give out door prizes at safety meetings....sort of an electronic "hat". We have 286 drivers in my division and I am going to get my mathematician buddy to figure the odds of one person "hitting" 3 times in 1 year.

Darn shame it's not the State Lottery...I'd play every week!

PS: I don't mind taking the test...we get paid 2 hours for going.

Edited by - IC on 12/19/2006 6:47:22 PM

CPCSC_TD
Top Member

USA
657 Posts

Posted - 12/19/2006 :  6:43:48 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
We use a third party which does everything- paper work, complaince, policy writing, random generated lists, etc....

As far as the lotto, a group of mathemticians I believe from Australia did figure the odds and all the possiblities of what the winning combinations were. They took a chance and sure enough, won!

Read about it in a math class I took- interesting story.
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Starbus
Active Member

USA
45 Posts

Posted - 12/20/2006 :  08:57:36 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have 18 drivers and I have assigned them each a number 1-18. I use a smple lotto program and I have that program pick 3 numbers between 1-18. Our state law requires either a third party or a computer generated program for random drug tests(so you can't pick names from a hat). At one time I used an outside company and that sort of thing happend all the time so I switched systems.
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Bluebird62
Top Member

USA
530 Posts

Posted - 12/20/2006 :  7:12:14 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My district is part of a consortium of drivers through a third party facility. It's odd how the numbers work out... sometimes I get four or five drivers chosen and other times I get zero. It's all in the luck of the draw.

The first company that I drove for was large enough that they had to do it monthly. I never got picked my first two years and then my third year I got picked six months in a row. Like IC, I didn't mind because I got paid for 1 1/2 hrs for 15 min of my time plus I was getting paid to go to the bathroom! :)

I've had two issues with my current district with drivers arguing drug tests. Most of my drivers are 50+ and I had one last year who argued for 20+ minutes about it. I tried everything tactic I could think of to smooth this over, but he was arguing that nobody in their right mind would drug test a 75 year old. The other argued me that I was "picking on him" because he had to go twice in two years!

As a result of the above two incidents, I brought in a rep from my third party to do a presentation on this. She did a great job explaining how the consortium works and she allowed me to use her presentation in my new driver orientations. As a result, all drivers veteran and beginning know what is expected and I now have a "one chance" policy that if you're picked and you even begin to argue it, I count it as a refusal. So far it has worked out great!

Edited by - Bluebird62 on 12/20/2006 7:13:00 PM
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80-RE4
Top Member

USA
5700 Posts

Posted - 12/20/2006 :  8:28:54 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Did you know that drivers who fail alc. test @ one company can apply and work at another company? I was kind of shocked at that.

Anyways- I'd rather take a drug test every week than go for a yearly physical, I don't like physicals...I wish my PCP did DOT physicals, i'm sick of seeing different doctors for that.
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william
Top Member

USA
1912 Posts

Posted - 12/20/2006 :  9:38:14 PM  Show Profile  Click to see william's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
One year I went four times within the span of a few months. I believe we have a computer that randomly select employees using their social security number. In California, if a drug or alcohol test comes up positive, the special certificate to operate a school bus,(DL-45),is revoked for a period of three years. The driver is directed to turn in his/her certificate to the CHP school bus officer.

William
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rswboe
Top Member

USA
675 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2006 :  10:13:45 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
"Random" can be a pretty funny thing, I got called 4 consecutive times two years ago, and haven't been called since (may have just jinxed myself). The last time I went I pulled out pencil and told the tester that I grew up in the sixties and know all my drugs, I should pass without a problem! She wasn't amused, no sence of humor...

Live each like it's going to be your last, one day you'll be right!
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80-RE4
Top Member

USA
5700 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2006 :  11:11:08 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
They have no sense of humor- their job is to go out and catch someone who is on drugs or drunk. Their goal is to reach so many number of people per day.

Not to be rude: But what kind of fun can you have in that kind of job? Collect people's "you know what" all day- yuck, the smell.

One even told me that she hates her job and they go around until they get a certain amount every day. I'd rather just have them poke me with a needle - or pull out a peice of my hair, a lot faster than a "UR" specimen test.
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Bluebird62
Top Member

USA
530 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2006 :  2:14:56 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by 80AmtranRE4

Did you know that drivers who fail alc. test @ one company can apply and work at another company? I was kind of shocked at that.




Ummm.... Negative on that -- When an employer hires a driver who already has a CDL, they are required to check with employers for the previous seven years.
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80-RE4
Top Member

USA
5700 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2006 :  2:51:16 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The driver failed a (Laidlaw-Durham-First-AE) alcohol test and is now driving a school bus for another LARGE (First-Durham-Laidlaw or AE)contractor , within 2 months.

I know this for a fact.

I did not pinpoint which company the driver got fired from and then hired to - (for obvious reasons) but within those 4 LARGE CONTRACTORS

-One of them fired her/him- and another one HIRED her/him within 2 months.

Edited by - 80-RE4 on 12/21/2006 2:54:28 PM
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B. Busguy33
Top Member

USA
3444 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2006 :  4:16:04 PM  Show Profile  Visit B. Busguy33's Homepage  Send B. Busguy33 an AOL message  Send B. Busguy33 a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
The driver failed a (Laidlaw-Durham-First-AE) alcohol test and is now driving a school bus for another LARGE (First-Durham-Laidlaw or AE)contractor , within 2 months.

I know this for a fact.

I did not pinpoint which company the driver got fired from and then hired to - (for obvious reasons) but within those 4 LARGE CONTRACTORS

-One of them fired her/him- and another one HIRED her/him within 2 months.


This is not the first time I've heard of this.
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IC
Top Member

USA
3413 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2006 :  6:56:17 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I still get a tiny bit nervous about drug tests...what if they mix up the specimens or don't clean the machine right or something...and you pop positive?

I know there are supposed to be failsafes...but ANYTHING can be screwed up if human beings are involved!

My regular blood work results got mixed up once....my doctor called and said come in IMMEDIATELY (whoevers' blood it was must have been in BAD shape!). Scared heck out of me! When I got there the doc said, upon further review, that he didn't think the results were mine, and they weren't. PHEW!
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william
Top Member

USA
1912 Posts

Posted - 12/25/2006 :  3:53:30 PM  Show Profile  Click to see william's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
This guy is probably not driving for First Student. If you fail an alcohol test, you wouldn't be eligible to drive for them for 15 years. Perhaps the previous employer's check is not required in all states, 80Amtran. I don't see why the company that hired that driver should remain anonymous, however. I would think that anyone who tests positive for drugs or alcohol should not be driving a school bus, and would certainly not deserve protection. At any rate, it's nearly impossible to foul up an alcohol test unless the technician is completely clueless.

I wish everyone happy holidays.

William
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80-RE4
Top Member

USA
5700 Posts

Posted - 12/25/2006 :  9:08:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by william

This guy is probably not driving for First Student. If you fail an alcohol test, you wouldn't be eligible to drive for them for 15 years. Perhaps the previous employer's check is not required in all states, 80Amtran. I don't see why the company that hired that driver should remain anonymous, however. I would think that anyone who tests positive for drugs or alcohol should not be driving a school bus, and would certainly not deserve protection. At any rate, it's nearly impossible to foul up an alcohol test unless the technician is completely clueless.

I wish everyone happy holidays.

"It's nearly impossible" means that its still possible right?

<especially on drug tests vs. alcohol test>

Sorry about remaining confidential on the company that hired the driver back-

If it was in the news or newspaper- it would be a different story- but for me to release that information would be an invasion of privacy. (hope you understand)
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CPCSC_TD
Top Member

USA
657 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2006 :  05:51:00 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
OKay, consider this- in the event you get a positive result: YOur specimen is split meaning one goes to the DOT office and stored for a period of years. The others is the one that the result is based on. Thus being said, if you do test postive, they can use the other spit specimen. PLus, you should be checking your label on your specimen when you actually give it to them.



AmTran: Laidlaw has a zero tolerance. That means Laidlaw does not allow anyone to oeprate a CMV witha blood alcohol content of anything above .000. However, DOT allow a bus driver to have up to .02 of alcohol in their blood. Therefor, someone could legally be temrinated of employment from Laidlaw and rehired legally from another company. When doing reference checks, Laidlaw may simply disclose they would not rehire the person but still nidcate they were a great workign employee- meaning they were on time, safe, had a great rapport with the students, etc...

Some companies choose to be strichter on the laws than other companies. Some choose not to challenge the law or go tougher for various reasons. I think this may help your scenario.
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80-RE4
Top Member

USA
5700 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2006 :  2:50:05 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Maybe that is what happened, because the company the driver was terminated from was Laidlaw.

When we had our drug tests at Laidlaw, my friend kept coming up + for drug use- however, it was later found out that it was because the driver was eating poppy seeded bagels.

Once she/he stopped eating the bagels, and they retested the driver- the test came out (-).

Edited by - 80-RE4 on 12/27/2006 2:53:50 PM
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IC
Top Member

USA
3413 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2006 :  3:08:36 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by CPCSC_TD

OKay, consider this- in the event you get a positive result: YOur specimen is split meaning one goes to the DOT office and stored for a period of years. The others is the one that the result is based on. Thus being said, if you do test postive, they can use the other spit specimen. PLus, you should be checking your label on your specimen when you actually give it to them.


Yeah, I had to initial both vials of bar-coded pee. I certainly hope there are procedures to recheck all positive tests...after all, peoples' jobs are on the line. But, I still get nervous...SO many people don't do their jobs anymore, especially the overworked and underpaid ones that are likely employed by these huge labs. Even if a screw-up can later be rectified....there's still usually a huge hassle involved.

I've never been tested for alcohol that I know of. I've had other drivers told me they had to blow in the machine at their drug tests, but I never have. How about stuff like Nyquil (it doesn't come with a shot glass for no reason!). Or mouthwash is also mostly alcohol. I don't use either....but I wonder if anybody has gotten in trouble for stuff like that? And isn't there some kind of seed used in baking....poppy? sesame?...that can cause a positive drug test. I've heard that....but it's probably a myth....or you'd have to eat 10 pounds of them at a sitting or something.
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80-RE4
Top Member

USA
5700 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2006 :  3:26:33 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
No, it's not a myth IC. Poppy seeds can create a (+) drug test, so I would suggest not eating them or only eating them on occasion. See my post above-

If my test came up + I would have another one taken. The company I work for allows us the right to have a re-take of a drug test within a certain amount of days- but it must be done quickly. If you KNOW you don't do drugs and you test +, why settle for anything less? Who cares what precautions they take, nothing is 100 percent failproof.

I've had one alcohol test done- it's done randomly. There are various ways that they do it. The one I had- I had to blow into a little straw. Of course it came up 0.00 BAC. First, they waive the thing around to make sure their is no alc. in the air, then you blow into it, you see the results, then they waive it around again.

Other people I know have had to wear a little mask.

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80-RE4
Top Member

USA
5700 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2006 :  3:39:31 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Article-
Causes of False-Positive Drug Test|

False-Positive Drug Tests
Causes of False-Positive Tests

Whether or not your company conducts random drug tests; this page offers a look at the false-positive results that have occurred over the years. It also offers links so that our readers can learn more about the topic.

"Once those blood and urine specimens leave my sight, I have lost control of my future. Transportation Secretary Jim Burnley acknowledges that one in 10 drug tests initially results in a false positive. I can only hope that whoever processes those tests does not make a mistake."
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UNCERTAINTIES OF DRUG TESTING
From:ST. LOUIS POST DISPATCH: December 31, 1988

The falures of Drug Testing and what those results can do to the victim are age old, as are the reports that accompany the bad test results


"False positive and negative results of drug testing occur. If you don't use drugs but for some reason test positive, no one will believe you. If you use drugs and test negative, you're going to keep your mouth shut."

School drug-testing no quick fix for social ills
From: THE WASHINGTON TIMES: April 2, 2002


Poppy Seeds Cause False - Positive Drug Test Results:

"False positives in drug testing are common. Jolt Cola, poppy seeds and some legally available medicines can trigger a positive result. Increased punitiveness will not solve the problems associated with drug use. Jailing, stigmatizing and depriving people of subsistence will not decrease drug abuse."
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DON'T CONDITION WELFARE ON DRUG TESTS
From: Buffalo News: August 14, 1997

Upon further investigation, I have uncovered further information regarding the matter of poppy seed and false-positive drug testing results. The Food and Drug Administration has an article on their site regarding the eating of poppy seeds and false-positive drug tests. (See page 25: "Poppy seeds contain morphine. And they will trigger a positive test on a urine test.")

The Urban Legend site has several cases concerning these false positive tests documented. (Search words drug test will bring you to the articles)


It is simply amazing as to how many reports of false-positive drug tests are available, and as to how many lives have been ruined by these test results; yet, the system keeps on testing. Sometimes I think that drug testing is just another means to get around at-will dismissal with no lawsuit attached.

"A trusted employee who held keys and alarm access to her store tests positive for drugs, so he's terminated. Would she have fired him for using Primatine for asthma? If he had used Actifed, Benadryl, Contac or Nyquil? How about Tylenol, Ibuprofen, Alka-Seltzer, Robitussin or Sucrets? Of if he had eaten a poppy-seed muffin? "

''No,'' you say? Well, she very well may have. Every item listed above and over 2,000 more will cause a false positive on a drug test. Would a better employee drink four shots of whiskey at lunch, chain smoke three packs of cigarettes a day and drop two tabs of LSD at night? A person using these substances will pass a drug test with flying colors. In fact, she may have hired someone just like this to replace her so-called ''trusted employee,'' so how does drug testing make any sense? "

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DRUG TEST FLAWS
The Fresno Bee: September 9, 1995



"Such screenings will prove to be costly, especially when over-the-counter medicines produce false-positive results that will require retesting. Of course, no price can be placed on the stigma and embarrassment an innocent applicant must endure while waiting for the absolution a second test brings."

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From:DISTRICT'S DRUG POLICY WOULD MISS THE POINT
St. Petersburg Times: January 17, 1999

Antibiotics Can Cause False-Positive Drug Tests:


According to several sources, including the FDA, antibiotics such as levofloxacin, ofloxacin, Ampicillin, Amoxicillin and Cipro can cause false positive drug testing results.



Since positive drug tests can cause a person his job, his livelihood and his reputation, I felt a strong need to address this issue here.

If Amendment V states"..nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation." Aren't the drug tests breaking our 5th Amendment rights? Is our job not our property? Is this test when falsly showing positive results a means by which our property (employment) is being ripped from beneath us without due process?

"The first problem with random drug testing of student athletes is a fundamental problem with all drug testing: The false positive test result. Depending on the circumstances, if a child ate a poppy seed muffin for breakfast, he could produce test results indicating that he is a recreational drug user. He would then no longer be innocent until proved guilty; he would be assumed guilty."

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SCHOOLS SHOULD AVOID DRUG TESTS
From: Wisconsin State Journalocument; July 2, 1995



Please follow the links below; for more information, and let us know if this has ever happened to you.

"Just what do they think will be the rate of false positives in their proposed drug tests? At a false-positive rate of just one half of one percent, Ridgefield (with 400 athletes) can ruin the lives of two innocent kids for the crime of wanting to play ball."


THE HAZARDS OF DRUG TESTING
Record (Northern New Jersey):December 1, 1997

"And "false positives" do occur. NATCA is awaiting a decision in an arbitration involving a false-positive drug test. A controller tested positive in the random test administered by the CompuChem Co., under contract with the Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration."

RANDOM DRUG TESTING OF FEDERAL WORKERS IS UNFAIR, INEFFECTIVE
From: Seattle Times: December 8, 1989

Drug Testing Litigation

From: drugfreeworkplace.com

From: Virtual Hospital

From: Journal of Analytical Toxicology

From: Substance Misuse Management in General Practice (SMMGP)
http://members.tripod.com/~issuesny/home/id10.html

Edited by - 80-RE4 on 12/27/2006 3:44:27 PM
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william
Top Member

USA
1912 Posts

Posted - 01/13/2007 :  1:36:36 PM  Show Profile  Click to see william's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
Notwithstanding your articles about poppy seeds, from the information that I have been able to acquire, from people who should know, such as MRO's, you would have to consume much, much more than is found in a single bagel, or hamburger bun. While we're at it, let's also use the "close proximity" excuse when testing positive for weed. Anyway, I don't believe everything I read in the newspapers.

If you are taking medicines that will show a positive result all you have to do is show a prescription for the medication when you provide the specimen. I know of no antibiotic that can be purchased without prescription. Of course if you don't have a prescription then you're doing something illegal. But even if you have a prescription from a dentist, less say, issued for pain arising from a tooth extraction, and you're taking it for a migraine headache, you're doing something illegal, in this state.

For the 20 years that I've been in this business, I have never seen a positive test where upon notification, the driver would not at some point admit to ingesting a drug or smoking marijuana, usually randomly (no pun intended), at a birthday party, etc.

If you know that you have not knowingly ingested drugs, you need to do everything possible to reverse the result of a false positive including bringing suit against the testing and collecting centers, if necessary.

William
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kscalf
Senior Member

USA
73 Posts

Posted - 01/24/2007 :  3:47:22 PM  Show Profile  Visit kscalf's Homepage  Reply with Quote
We also use a third party to supply the random draws. Since I administer the program, I know that some drivers are drawn more frequently than others. It just works out that way.
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JK
Top Member

USA
7307 Posts

Posted - 01/24/2007 :  4:20:48 PM  Show Profile  Visit JK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I have no problem at all with drug and alcohol testing and in-depth background checks before allowed behind the wheel of a school bus.

There is a possibility of false positives as well as false negatives, depending on how the specimens are handled. Been quite a bit of fraud going on at some labs, which the press has uncovered over the years. Big money when simply passing most the overload without actual testing.

I would think that the immediate step when believing a false positive has occurred is demanding a free retest which most labs offer, as well as going to a separate lab and paying for your own test on the same day and within four hours of the retest.

Even when it is no longer worth it to continue driving school bus, a false positive needs clearing up before moving on. (jk)

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