The FAA today published its Final Rule regarding Antidrug and Alcohol Misuse Prevention Programs for Personnel Engaged in Specified Aviation Activities. The final rule “amends the FAA regulations governing drug and alcohol testing to clarify that each person who performs a safety- sensitive function for a regulated employer by contract, including by subcontract at any tier, is subject to testing.” It also rescinds all prior guidance on the subject of testing contractors in order to clarify the FAA’s previously issued conflicting guidance about which contractors were subject to drug and alcohol testing.
According to the FAA, “[t]his final rule does not expand the scope of the FAA-regulated drug and alcohol testing programs. Rather, it clarifies that any individual who performs a safety-sensitive function by contract must be subject to the FAA-regulated drug and alcohol testing requirements, regardless of the tier of the contract under which the individual performs. This rulemaking is not questioning or expanding the current outsourcing process. Instead, the final rule eliminates any confusion that might have existed regarding drug and alcohol testing of subcontractors who are connected to the regulated employer through the outsourcing process.” The final rule contains a lengthy discussion of the comments received in response to the previously published Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and the FAA’s justifications for the final rule as published.
The amendments contained in the final rule become effective April 10, 2006. However, compliance with the information collection requirements in part 121, Appendix I, Section IX, and Appendix J, Section VII, until the FAA publishes in the Federal Register the control numbers assigned by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for the information collection requirements.
If you would like further information regarding the final rule you should contact the following: For technical information, Diane J. Wood, Manager, Drug Abatement Division, AAM-800, Office of Aerospace Medicine, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591, telephone number (202) 267-8442; and for legal information, Patrice M. Kelly, Senior Attorney, Regulations Division, AGC-200, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20591, telephone number (202) 267-8442.