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Coast Guard raises random drug-testing rate to 50 percent

Jan 3, 2019 10:11 AM

The move is the result of data indicating a positive rate for mariners that exceeds 1 percent

The following is text from a notice in the Federal Register:

(WASHINGTON) — The Coast Guard requires marine employers to establish random drug-testing programs for covered crewmembers in accordance with 46 CFR 16.230. Every marine employer is required by 46 CFR 16.500 to collect and maintain a record of drug-testing data for each calendar year, and submit this data by March 15 of the following year to the Coast Guard in an annual MIS report.

Each year, the Coast Guard will publish a notice reporting the results of random drug testing for the previous calendar year's MIS data and the minimum annual percentage rate for random drug testing for the next calendar year. The purpose of setting a minimum random drug-testing rate is to promote maritime safety by establishing an effective deterrent to drug misuse within the maritime workforce. Intoxicated operations poses a serious threat to life, property and the environment in the maritime commons. As such, the minimum random drug-testing rate is intended to deter and detect illegal drug misuse in the maritime industry.

The Coast Guard announces that the minimum random drug-testing rate for calendar year 2019 is 50 percent (from 25 percent in 2018). The Coast Guard has increased the minimum random drug-testing rate for 2019 as a result of MIS data for the most recent reporting year indicating that the positive rate is greater than 1 percent. 46 CFR part 16.230(f)(2) requires the commandant to set the minimum random drug-testing rate at 50 percent when the positivity rate for drug use is greater than 1 percent.

For 2019, the minimum random drug-testing rate will be 50 percent of covered employees for the period of Jan. 1 through Dec. 31, 2019 in accordance with 46 CFR 16.230(e).

For questions about this notice, please contact Patrick Mannion, Drug and Alcohol Prevention and Investigation Program manager, Office of Investigations and Casualty Analysis (CG-INV), U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters, DAPI@uscg.mil.

Jan 17, 2019 02:35 pm
 Posted by  Donald T.

Bureaucratic BS to feather the nest of who? Wonder what Coasties have ties to the testing industry. It was clearly spelled out by American Maritime Safety Inc. that the 2018 results were skewed over the 1 percent limit by new applicant! These people never set foot on a ship and were flagged before entering the industry. Yet the Coasties saw fit to ramp up testing for all existing mariners for no good reason except perhaps graft and/or greed. This blatant and capricious behavior should be investigated.

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