FMCSA: Marijuana remains prohibited for all truckers

In a post last week, our blog discussed how the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has introduced a rule calling for the creation of a database listing the names of licensed truckers who have either refused drug tests or failed drug tests.

Curiously enough, this issue perhaps took on added significance after last week's elections, which saw voters in four states -- California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada -- legalize marijuana for recreational purposes and voters in three states -- Arkansas, Florida and North Dakota -- legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes.

Indeed, statistics show that as many as 80 million people currently live in states where recreational marijuana is now legal in some form, while over half the states permit medical marijuana.

Given this dramatic expansion of pro-pot laws, it naturally raises the question as to what, if anything, the FMCSA has recently had to say about use of the drug in the trucking industry.

Specifically, has the agency issued any sort of follow-up announcement to their proclamation last November that marijuana legalization in any form would not change its drug testing program or made an abrupt about-face on the issue?

As it turns out -- and perhaps to no one's surprise -- it was the former, as the FMCSA issued a statement last Wednesday reiterating its stance that so long as marijuana remains a Schedule I drug under federal law, it's use by truckers is strictly forbidden.

Indeed, it indicated that the only way this would ever change would be if the White House's Office of National Drug Control Policy took definitive measures to change this classification.

It will, of course, be fascinating to see how this growing number of marijuana legalization measures affects not just the trucking sector, but the transportation industry as a whole.

Stay tuned for updates …

Consider speaking with a skilled legal professional if you have been seriously injured or lost a loved one in an accident caused by a distracted, impaired or otherwise negligent trucker. 

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