May 2021 Newsletter
Driver Positive Drug Tests in 2021 Continue at Last Year’s Rate so Far
The March Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse numbers are out! The number of drivers enrolling in return-to-duty programs remains low, as the number of positive drug tests remains consistent with last year’s rates. These statistics are pointing to the likelihood that drivers failing the drug tests are leaving the profession.
14,303 positive drug tests set a record in the first three months of this year. That’s an average of 4,767 per month compared with 2020’s average of 4,663 failures per month. As of April 1, FMCSA’s Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse has accumulated 64,846 drivers with violations, only 10,609 of those drivers have passed their return-to-duty drug test. This leaves 54,237 drivers in the prohibited status, and the balance (41,029) have not started the initial return-to-work process.
Disruptions Add More Stress to Already Strained Capacity Market
New pressures from increased demand are squeezing capacity in a tight market. According to Noah Hoffman, Vice President of retail and supply chain solutions at C.H. Robinson, two factors adding pressure are the government stimulus checks driving economic growth and the re-opening of the economy. Capacity is coming back when compared to last year, but not fast enough to keep up with demand.
Other sources of tightening capacity are short term disruptions such as the oil pipeline shutdown and pallet availability which threaten to have long-term ripple effects. The most important thing to do now is to optimize where companies are placing workers and resources in order to effectively deal with the limited capacity and unpredictable disruptions that continue to arise.