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:
Sole proprietors are not exempt from random testing.— TDLR (@tdlrlicense) October 19, 2016
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.
Copy and paste this statement into your email body:
Main TDLR Office - Austin
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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