FAA Requested To Clear Up Drug-testing Confusion by Aviation Industry
Written by Lucas Kibby, CleanFleet
Sixteen aviation organizations and businesses wrote the FAA on February 15 asking the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to clarify the applicability of drug and alcohol testing requirements to workers who are involved in receiving items for stock.
These organizations are seeking a legal interpretation of the requirements after reports found that some FAA auditors viewed receiving responsibilities as safety-sensitive functions and thus covered under drug and alcohol testing requirements.
A letter signed by organizations such as the National Air Transportation Association and General Aviation Manufacturers Association, as well as companies such as Gulfstream said, “A receiving process simply verifies that incoming parts or materials are what they purport to be and that there are no obvious reasons to question a previous determination of airworthiness.”
According to AIN Online, the letter adds that receiving activities do not require the creation of a maintenance record. “Therefore, they are not safety-sensitive functions under [the drug and alcohol testing requirements of 14 CFR] Part 120.”
Historically, agency guidance has not included either distributing or receiving parts in maintenance or preventive maintenance duties, the organizations agreed.
But the letter noted auditors who “have informally opined that personnel conducting tasks associated solely with receiving items for stock are performing maintenance and are therefore engaged in safety-sensitive functions,” and added, “This expansive interpretation would result in the misclassification of employees, thereby diluting random testing pools with non-safety-sensitive personnel.”