If you are a trucker or transportation worker and have experienced a DOT drug and alcohol testing violation, we understand your frustration. You are likely eager to get back on the road. Many professional CDL drivers’ income relies on their ability to drive.
But the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Substance Abuse Professional Program is a formal process. It needs to be completed in a, step-by-step manner for drivers to get back on the road.
If you are wondering “how long is the return to duty process?” continue reading about the DOT SAP’s timeline.
The Return to Duty Process
The DOT SAP Program follows a strict return to duty protocol, per the Department of Transportation. This process includes the following steps:
- The employee selects a DOT Qualified Substance Abuse Professional
- The SAP performs an initial evaluation
- The SAP recommends education or treatment based the information gathered during the evaluation
- Once the recommendations are satisfied the employee returns to the SAP for the follow-up evaluation.
- The employee is designated return to duty test eligible by the SAP
- The employee is then administered a return to duty drug and alcohol test at the discretion of the employer.
- Upon confirmation of negative test results the employer may allow the employee to start performing safety-sensitive duties.
- The employer administers the follow-up testing plan at the direction of the SAP for a period of 12 months(minimum) to 60 months (maximum)
DOT SAP Timeline
As you may imagine, there is no one-size-fits-all process for every driver or violation. Many factors can lengthen or shorten the process, including:
- The severity of the violation
- The driver’s willingness to participate in the process
- The individual SAP’s approach
- And more.
So, how long does the SAP program take to complete? Each case is unique. In some cases individuals can return to duty test-eligible within a few days, in others it may take months. This depends primarily on the recommendations given after the initial evaluation and the employee’s willingness to participate.
However, the testing plan after the employee’s return from a duty drug test will last at least 12 months and may continue for up to 60 months. It is essential to consider that this testing takes place while the employee is back on safety-sensitive duty.
DOT SAP Program Cost
You might be wondering how much does a DOT SAP program cost?
We are happy to work with employers that are willing to cover the cost of the program for their employees. In most cases, employers do not cover the cost and it is up to the safety sensitive employee to navigate the costs and payment associated with the return to duty process. American River Wellness has a variety of flexible payment options including Afterpay, split payment and promotional pricing. Reach out directly for more details.
Trust American River Wellness
At American River Wellness, we collect all of the helpful resources you need to navigate your DOT SAP program more easily. We are available to help you whenever and however you need.