FINAL FRA RULE EXTENDS DRUG AND ALCOHOL TESTING TO MECHANICAL EMPLOYEES

Published in the Federal Register today, February 2, 2022, at Vol. 87, No. 22 was a Final Rule from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) that expands the scope of 49 CFR Part 219 drug and alcohol testing requirement to mechanical employees.  The Rule is effective on March 4, 2022.

The FRA defines mechanical employees as any employee who, on behalf of the railroad, performs mechanical tests or inspections required by parts 215, 221, 229, 230, 232, 238, or 299 of this chapter on railroad rolling equipment or its components.

FRA defines rolling equipment to mean locomotives, railroad cars, and one or more locomotives coupled to one or more railroad cars.

Just as with the addition of the FRA Maintenance of Way (MOW) Roadway workers to 49 CFR Part  219 in June of 2017, the FRA railroad or contractor employer who employs mechanical employees will be:

  1. Subject to an annual random testing rate of 50% for drug and 25% for alcohol just for the mechanical employees, and
  2. Required to submit or amend their FRA Drug and Alcohol Plan to [email protected] at least 60 days after March 4, 2022.

The complete Federal Regulation Notice may be found at:
A Rule by the Federal Railroad Administration

Or, alternatively at:

Federal Register

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