Drugs and alcohol can wreck a life, and if you fail a DOT drug test, you may feel like it’s the end of the road. You may be afraid that you’ll lose your job or that your significant other will leave you. This is the situation one of the alumni of BoardPrep Recovery found himself in, and like you, he too feared the consequences of relapse. Fortunately, with the help of an addiction treatment program, he was able to get back on the road to recovery. Read our alumni’s story and get treatment at BoardPrep Recovery today by calling 866.796.4720.
Don’t Give Up Hope If You Relapse
Not long ago, one of our staff members became friends with a tractor-trailer driver who had recently moved to the local area. He’d been in recovery for some time, but soon after the two met and started having coffee together, he told our staff member that he’d recently relapsed and just failed a DOT drug test. He said he was immediately removed from CMV (commercial motor vehicle) service and forbidden from operating a CMV on public roads until he completed the “return-to-duty” process with a DOT-qualified Substance Abuse Professional (aka “SAP”).
Our staff member had found his friend to be earnest in his desire to “get clean and stay clean.” Therefore, when he called with all sorts of questions and fears about his situation, our staff member suggested they get together for coffee and talk about it.
“I’m Afraid I’ll Lose My CDL and My Job”
Before their meeting up at Starbucks, our staff member did some online research to get legitimate answers to the questions his friend had raised. On the night they met up, his friend started off by saying, “I’m afraid I’ll lose my CDL and my job because I failed that drug test.”
Our team member told him, “There’s no way to determine whether or not you’ll lose your job unless you talk directly with your boss. In the U.S., that decision is up to your employer and your company’s policies. But if you want to return to commercial driving and either keep your job, if your company allows for that possibility, or get hired at another trucking company, you’re going to need to go through the return-to-duty procedure mandated by the DOT and have it supervised by a substance abuse professional.”
The friend said, “Yeah, another driver I know told me my boss would be sending me a list of SAPs I could contact to get help.”
Our staff member responded, “Well, yeah, they’re required to do that. But if I were you, I’d be as proactive as possible and ask for that list. Then start making the calls and get a substance abuse professional to evaluate you. The SAP will then assist and supervise you with treatment, education, follow-up testing, and aftercare, which is what the return-to-duty process entails.”
Will the Failed DOT Drug Test Go on My Record?
The friend still seemed worried and asked, “Does a failed DOT drug test go on my record?” Our staff member replied, “I looked into that while I was doing some online research, and yes, your employer is bound by law to provide records of your DOT drug testing history to new employers. But if you successfully complete a return-to-duty program with the supervision of a qualified Substance Abuse Professional, you can still get your commercial truck driving back on track.”
For the first time since the two had sat down, his face relaxed a bit, and the team member could even detect a ray of hope in his friend’s eyes.
This friend quickly enrolled in a return-to-duty program, passed it, was allowed to keep working with his former employer. Today, he is back on the road, doing what he loves and staying clean, one day at a time. He has a renewed and revitalized commitment to maintaining a solid recovery program in all areas of his life.
What Will It Take to Return to Duty?
The answer to this question is complicated. If you’re approved past the return-to-duty process, you’re going to have a minimum of six random and supervised drug tests in the first 12 months. After that, follow-up testing may continue for up to five years, at the discretion of the substance abuse professional. In other words, you’ve got an important decision to make. It’s not just about getting your job back or finding work at another company. It’s about entering long-term recovery.
Get Clean With BoardPrep Recovery Center®
How willing are you to do whatever it takes to get and stay clean? Because if you are anything like our team members, developing and strengthening a foundation in recovery daily is essential to having any lasting success in life. Work, relationships, personal growth, and everything else depends on you deepening your sense of how you live recovery in your life. Even if you’ve recently relapsed, jumping forward with everything you’ve got to strengthen your recovery ought to be the first thing on your agenda!
At BoardPrep Recovery Center®, we’re committed to helping people overcome their substance use. Even if you’ve failed a DOT drug test, you can get help and move forward with your recovery. Our treatment options include:
- Alcohol addiction treatment
- Heroin addiction treatment
- Cocaine addiction treatment
- Meth addiction treatment
- Opioid addiction treatment