• Henry Seaton

DOT bans Pennsylvania drug testing lab

The U.S. Department of Transportation has ordered the operator of a Pennsylvania drug testing laboratory to cease all drug testing operations for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. In a public interest exclusion issued Aug. 18, the DOT Office of the Secretary of Transportation (OST) barred Elizabeth Pope, who formerly operated Eastgate Laboratory Testing, from conducting DOT-regulated testing for five years.

In December 2014, Pope was sentenced to eight months' house arrest and ordered to pay 109,000 in restitution for her conviction related to falsifying FMCSA-regulated drug and alcohol testing of commercial motor vehicle drivers. According to the DOT Office of Inspector General, an investigation found that between 2008 and 2012, Pope illegally used the computer-generated signature of a doctor who had previously served as Eastgate's medical review officer on paperwork required by FMCSA. The doctor had ceased doing business with Eastgate in 2005.

Avoid legal pitfalls

Rules of the Road offers practical help on avoiding legal pitfalls in working with customers, independent contractors, insurers, factoring companies, etc.

Many serious legal risks will go unnoticed unless you are watching for them. Don't take chances.

 Although successful food haulers already employ the common sense steps required in FDA's new transportation rule, declaring your compliance can help you stay competitive for spot-market freight.