The Complete Guide On DOT Drug test 2024

Governments in countries like the US, demand truck drivers to pass the DOT drug test which is conducted by the department of transportation to ensure that the person who is driving a vehicle has not intaken illicit drugs such as cocaine or marijuana. 

What is DOT Drug Testing?

In DOT drug testing, a urine sample of a person is checked for traces of drugs and other toxic chemicals. DOT drug testing is conducted by the department of transportation of the US government. The main aim of DOT drug testing is to have those employees in whom no components of drugs are found in any amount, that is the employees who get a negative drug test report. 

The US government believes that truck drivers have to offer safety-sensitive services. It is therefore extremely necessary for the employees to pass a drug test if they wish to continue their job. In case the employees end up having a negative drug test report, they are likely to get terminated from their service. As a result, many truck drivers make use of synthetic pee, also known as fake urine, to get through the drug test conveniently and save their job.

dot drug testing

Who Is Subject to DOT Drug Test?

As per the DOT employee handbook, the prime objective of DOT drug testing is to “employ operators who are 100 percent drug- and alcohol-free.” Any person who falls into the category of performing a safety-sensitive service has to undergo a DOT drug test. 

Some of the major safety-sensitive tasks include- driving a truck, working on a pipeline, repairing an airplane, and operating a ferry bus or train. Not only this, people who have the job of flight attendants and security guards also have to pass the DOT drug test with a negative report. Here is the list of trucking companies that conduct urine test and hair drug screening.

What Substances Does DOT Test For?

DOT testing is done to check for traces of drugs as well as the consumption of alcohol by a person. Usually, a DOT drug test collects urine as a sample and then tests for the presence of drugs or other toxic substances in the body of an individual. Following are the drugs that are tested in a DOT test.

  • Marijuana/THC
  • Cocaine
  • Amphetamines (including methamphetamine)
  • Opiates (including heroin, codeine, and morphine)
  • Phencyclidine (PCP)

Amongst these drugs, DOT has claimed that Amphetamines and Marijuana were two of the drugs that were found in the most concentration in truck drivers and other commercial motor vehicle drivers.  Some people try to cheat the drug test with artificial urine. You can find more information here in this post about does DOT test for synthetic urine.

How is a DOT Drug Test Conducted?

In a DOT drug test, the commonly collected sample is that of the urine of a person. While the test is being carried out, the employee should be able to produce as much as 45 milliliters of urine. In case an employee is not able to give 45 milliliters of urine for the sample, he will be asked to consume 40 ounces of fluid. Meanwhile, he can not leave the testing site until and unless his sample is collected. 

Also, once the employee has produced nearly 40 to 45 milliliters of urine, the urine sample will be poured into two separate bottles and the extra one will be kept as a split sample. Further, the employee has to fill out a consent form that he agrees to get the drug test done. The best part about a DOT drug test is that it can not be carried out by employers just because they want to. 

An employee has to be informed well in advance before he has to undergo a drug test. Under certain circumstances, a DOT drug test is sure to happen. These conditions include- pre-employment screening, random tests, post-accident drug tests, return-to-duty drug tests, follow-up tests, and other random tests that will be let known to you before they are conducted. 

We have written a separate guide on how to pass the hair follicle test for truck drivers, which will help you prepare for the DOT test.


DOT drug tests are conducted to ensure a safe and sound environment, especially for the employees working to provide safety-sensitive service to the people. Usually, the employees will be informed beforehand that they have to appear for a DOT drug test and this is the reason that the employees can consider using fake pee as a sample to submit to the lab professionals. 


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