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FMCSA announces launch of driver pre-employment screening

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has announced that it will launch a new Driver Pre-Employment Screening Program, which will allow commercial motor carrier companies to electronically access driver inspection and crash records as a part of the hiring process. The program is expected to begin in December 2009. Commercial driver safety records are currently available to federal and state law enforcement agencies or personnel, and accessible to drivers through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

Once the pre-employment screening program is launched, driver safety records will be readily available to motor carriers regardless of state or jurisdiction. In accordance with federal privacy laws, drivers must first give written consent in order for their records to be released. The Driver Pre-Employment Screening Program will source its records from the FMCSA’s Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS). The MCMIS is comprised of driver performance data, including roadside inspection and compliance review results, enforcement data, state-reported crashes, and motor carrier census data.

Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood, says that by using driver safety information during pre-employment screening, motor carriers will be able to better assess potential safety risks of a prospective driver-employee, and drivers will have additional opportunities to verify the data in their driving history and correct any discrepancies. “Safety is our number one priority at the Department of Transportation,” says LaHood. “This new initiative will help trucking companies ensure the safest drivers are behind the wheel of commercial trucks and buses. Making this information more transparent will make our roads and highways safer for everyone.”
 

October 9, 2009

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