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The tangled web of legal marijuana and Hair tests

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Shawn M.'s Comment
member avatar

Gotta say I love this Forum. Ill make it short and sweet. Me and my father have been doing renovation work for years, traveling around the country. I love being on the road and said "old man when you retire im going to drive trucks." Unfortunate but our last job was in Colorado. I replaced the 3 12 ounce beers I normally drink with a couple puffs on a joint (im in colorado) I have no problem not smoking pot as its never really my vice anyhow and its more of the novelty of smoking it legal. Thing is I got hair down to my ass. Am i due a hair cut and have to wait 90 days? I was thinking of going with the roelh get you CDL school and was reading that they do hair tests. I got a little advice and was told to stay away from the England and Swift programs. Any advice would be helpful. Thanks guys and gals Shawn

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Old School's Comment
member avatar
I got a little advice and was told to stay away from the England and Swift programs.

Welcome aboard Shawn!

The tangled web you need to be concerned with is the "advice" you've been getting. We've got very successful drivers in here with both of the companies you mentioned.

The company you drive for doesn't determine how well you do at this career, but rather your whole approach to the job.

First thing for you to do is take a good 120 days without smoking weed. That will give you plenty of time to read and study the following materials...

Also you can participate in our forum and get yourself a really good start on your new career by learning from some of the best of the best out there on the road. We've got em right here, and they are more than willing to help you.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Shawn wrote:

I got a little advice and was told to stay away from the England and Swift programs.

Welcome Shawn. Adding onto what Old School suggested... That advice? Was just that, "very little". More on that in a bit.

So yeah, smoking grass and drinking cannot safely co-exist when operating a CMV. Cutting your hair is of little value because it's the first inch of the follicle they are most interested in. If you are serious about getting into this industry, a failed drug screen is a very difficult event to get past.

Now...the advice you received about Swift's training, pure unadulterated BS. Unless the individual offering said advice actually experienced Swift's training academy and mentoring program, their opinion is based on what they heard from someone else. These "stories" tend to grow into internet legends and are rarely based on fact, but a disguised attempt by the source to blame Swift or England or other for their failures. Many of us in this forum have successfully completed programs for both companies. I can assure both programs are high quality and effective. It all boils down to the student; their focus, commitment and effort.

Here is a link of numerous "programs":

Company-Sponsored Training Programs

Study the information Old School sent you...it will open your eyes to the actual truth and facts of professional driving. Good luck.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards

Company-sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Shawn M.'s Comment
member avatar

Dang I hit report on G-towns comment, im sorry I thought is said reply. I will put my glasses on from now on. Thanks for the quick replies. I will look over what you guys have sent me. I will also look over the swift and england programs and I know people bad mouth companies when in fact its them that cant hack it. I have no issues not drinking and have no issue not smoking pot for the rest of my life. Sorry I reported you G-town!

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Dang I hit report on G-towns comment, im sorry I thought is said reply. I will put my glasses on from now on. Thanks for the quick replies. I will look over what you guys have sent me. I will also look over the swift and england programs and I know people bad mouth companies when in fact its them that cant hack it. I have no issues not drinking and have no issue not smoking pot for the rest of my life. Sorry I reported you G-town!

Not a problem at all...I've done it, especially on my I-Phone. No worries Man...

Parrothead66's Comment
member avatar

If you honestly only took a couple hits then detection even in a hair sample is low. Not saying it would never show but the % is really low for a one time use. In general hair test covers the last 90-100 days so that would obviously be your best route. Stay clean for 3 months minimum and then continue that trend. Good luck on your future endeavors.

Shawn M.'s Comment
member avatar

Yea just a couple hits a night while i was in colorado (6 weeks) looks like im going to go fishing for a bit while im back in Georgia. Thats not going to break my heart. That will give me time to study up and try to find the right type of training that will suit me. I never been in trouble the last thing I want to do is fail a drug test because of my recreation while in CO. After looking over "the highroad" practice tests its looks like my after work beer will also have to wait till i get home for a few days and thats fine also. thanks for the insight gentlemen

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Shawn wrote:

Yea just a couple hits a night while i was in colorado (6 weeks) looks like im going to go fishing for a bit while im back in Georgia. Thats not going to break my heart. That will give me time to study up and try to find the right type of training that will suit me. I never been in trouble the last thing I want to do is fail a drug test because of my recreation while in CO. After looking over "the highroad" practice tests its looks like my after work beer will also have to wait till i get home for a few days and thats fine also. thanks for the insight gentlemen

Shawn,...just an FYI on the beer,...only a trace amount of alcohol causes a fail. My rule of thumb; if I am driving the next day, no alcohol of any kind the day before, even to the extent of the morning mouthwash, I only use alcohol-free oral hygiene products. This is important since once you are hired as a full time driver, they can pull you in for a random test at any time. If you had a couple of brews the night before... I think you get the picture.

Good luck!

Dan R.'s Comment
member avatar

To add to that for people reading and thinking about getting into this, it should be noted that 0.08 means nothing in a CMV. By the time you get to that level of intoxication, you're at twice the legal limit for CDL holders in relation to getting DUIs, and when G-Town says any trace, that's any percentage at all and you're put out of service which goes on your record. That was easy to me as, in my alcohol binging days, I'd go through a six pack in a year, but for people that like to crack one open at the end of the day that can be a difficult adjustment. Should also note, 'near beer' or 'non-alcoholic' beer DOES contain alcohol, just significantly less. But when you're dealing with a limit of none, 'significantly less' is still quite significant.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

To add to that for people reading and thinking about getting into this, it should be noted that 0.08 means nothing in a CMV. By the time you get to that level of intoxication, you're at twice the legal limit for CDL holders in relation to getting DUIs, and when G-Town says any trace, that's any percentage at all and you're put out of service which goes on your record. That was easy to me as, in my alcohol binging days, I'd go through a six pack in a year, but for people that like to crack one open at the end of the day that can be a difficult adjustment. Should also note, 'near beer' or 'non-alcoholic' beer DOES contain alcohol, just significantly less. But when you're dealing with a limit of none, 'significantly less' is still quite significant.

Thanks for pointing this out. For extra clarification, the legal limit for cdl holders is .03 whether in a cmv or personal vehicle.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

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