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Dec 05 Written by 

TDLR Contradicts Towing Drug Testing Policy

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We had a chat on Twitter with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) about their random drug testing policy for owner-operators in the towing industry. It turns out, there’s a quite a bit of confusion on the topic. 

Before we became a TDLR approved drug testing consortium, we had many discussions with towing owner-operators. An owner-operator is someone who owns and operates their own tow truck.

Most towing owner-operators believed that they were exempt from random drug testing. Since the TDLR requires random drug testing for employers, this surprised us. The TDLR has an approved consortium list so, why would owner-operators be exempt? If you’re not familiar with a drug testing consortium, it’s a pool of employees from many companies. Consortia make it possible for individual owner-operators to be subject to random drug testing. 

We checked their website for answers and here is the direct statement on their FAQ page:

If you are the sole employee at your own tow company, you are only subject to the pre-employment drug screen and the annual drug screen.

In October of 2016, we had a discussion on Twitter with the TDLR to clarify our confusion: 

The TDLR answer is clear. Although, the statement on the TDLR website still says otherwise. The last time we checked was December 4, 2016. We’re taking this as an official statement from TDLR. If you're an owner-operator that is subject to the TDLR drug testing, enroll in a consortium and be randomly selected for drug screening. 

We want to make sure the TDLR is enforcing their drug policy consistently for owners in the industry. If you’re a towing owner-operator, you can help us accomplish this goal. Please contact the TDLR to have them change this statement on their website. Email the Executive Director at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or contact the TDLR at their main office.

Copy and paste this statement into your email body: 

Main TDLR Office - Austin  

Mailing Address:

Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation

P.O. Box 12157

Austin, Texas 78711

Telephone: (512) 463-6599

Toll-Free (in Texas): (800) 803-9202

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1443 Last modified on Friday, 05 January 2018
Hagen DeRouen

Co-founder & CEO at Screensoft. 5+ years experience with employment screening program management and guidance. Certifications including FCRA basic, MRO assistant, and professional collector trainer. 


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