Can a Safety-Sensitive Employee Use Cannabidiol (CBD) Products?
Can a safety-sensitive employee use Cannabidiol (CBD) products?
Maybe, but it is not a good idea because there actually may be more THC in the CBD product than the donor may realize. That actual THC use may cause a positive result.
In its February 2020 CBD notice, DOT points out that it requires testing for marijuana (THC) and not CBD. However, the issue is complicated by the fact that:
The labeling of many CBD products may be misleading because the products could contain higher levels of THC than what the product label states. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not currently certify the levels of THC in CBD products, so there is no Federal oversight to ensure that the labels are accurate. The FDA has cautioned the public that: “Consumers should beware purchasing and using any [CBD] products.” The FDA has stated: “It is currently illegal to market CBD by adding it to a food or labeling it as a dietary supplement.”
CBD use is not a legitimate medical explanation under Part 40 for a laboratory-confirmed marijuana positive result. Consequently, the MRO must verify THC laboratory-confirmed test result as positive result, even if an employee claims they only used a CBD product.
In the CBD Notice, the DOT also reminds the public:
"It remains unacceptable for any safety-sensitive employee subject to the Dept of Transportation’s drug testing regulations to use marijuana. Since the use of CBD products could lead to a positive drug test result, Department of Transportation-regulated safety-sensitive employees should exercise caution when considering whether to use CBD products."
Remember: CBD use is not illegal, but THC use is. If you are a service agent, please share the DOT’s CBD Notice with your clients. If you are an employer, please share it with your employees. It’s better to be safe than sorry – and safety is the number one priority!