Pennsylvania has repealed its post-accident drug and alcohol testing requirement that was at Section 3756 of the PA vehicle code. It has replaced it with a provision that states, “The department shall promulgate regulations consistent with 49 CFR 382.303 (relating to post-accident testing).”
As you recall from earlier newsletters, PA’s vehicle code, at Section 3756, provided that police officers investigating an accident involving a CMV, bus, or hazmat “shall request that the driver of the vehicle submit to testing for alcohol and controlled substances.” The cost was to be borne by the driver’s employer.
You can imagine the issues and problems that this would create. Not only was it inconsistent with the FMCSA “hearsed, nursed, or towed” criteria, but there was no requirement of “probable cause”.
This raised a question of whether there could be any criminal prosecution based in the results. Additionally, absent consistency with the FMCSA provisions, it raised issues for the response to inquiries by later employers.
Fortunately, the repeal of this section and the direction for PennDOT to draft regulations consistent with the FMCSA provisions should put things in order.