Alcohol testing can sometimes be complicated and confusing. There are many types of panels available for alcohol testing. Depending on the needs of the test (for employment versus a court-ordered test), you may only require a breath alcohol test, or you made need alcohol testing with a 5 or 10-panel drug test. A great alcohol test that is easy to get administered is the breath alcohol test or BAT. This test is actually required for DOT testing so the testing is fairly available at occupational health clinics around the United States.
At National Drug Screening, we contract with over 3000 nationwide facilities that offer breath alcohol testing. Blood alcohol testing is an accurate alcohol test to determine impairment. It is an invasive test as blood must be drawn. It is also not always easy to find a qualified phlebotomist to properly draw the blood and properly package it for testing at a laboratory. Urine alcohol testing becomes very complicated, see below for more on urine alcohol testing.
To purchase an alcohol test panel from National Drug Screening, order online or give us a call at 866-843-4545 to schedule an alcohol and/or drug test near you. Breath alcohol testing is the most often used alcohol test to determine current impairment. EtG alcohol testing does not measure current impairment but does measure recent consumption of alcohol going back up to 80 hours when testing with urine and up to 90 days when testing with hair.
Common Alcohol Test Panels
Breath Alcohol Test or BAT Test Panel
This test measures the breath alcohol concentration which correlates with blood alcohol concentration. The test is performed using an evidential breath testing device (EBT). For DOT testing, the Evidential Breath Testing (EBT) device must be on the NHTSA conforming products list (CPL) for evidential devices and are the only devices you may use to conduct alcohol confirmation tests under DOT regulation 49 CFR Part 40. The testing is performed by a qualified breath alcohol technician commonly called a BAT technician. This is an accurate test. An initial screening test is performed and at a positive level of .02 or above, a second confirmation test is performed after 15 minutes.
Typically a 0.04 breath alcohol level or above is a positive for workplace testing. At 0.02 an employee is sent home not to return back to work until the next day. The levels of 0.02 or higher show recent consumption of alcohol, a level of 0.04 or above shows impairment.
Breath alcohol testing is performed on employees in both DOT and Non-DOT programs. For DOT programs the DOT Alcohol Testing Form is used to record the results of the testing. For Non-DOT testing, the Non-DOT alcohol testing form is used for recording the results of testing. For any breath alcohol testing, the BAT technician should immediately call the employer representative (DER) as soon as a confirmed positive result is recorded.
Issues with Urine Alcohol Testing
Urine alcohol testing other than ETG alcohol testing does not show current impairment. In fact the individual being tested may have has a few drinks over the weekend and test positive on a urine alcohol test on Monday. Did they violate any company policy – most likely the answer is NO. It is important to utilize breath alcohol testing to determine impairment or prohibited use of alcohol. A positive urine alcohol test is not indicative of alcohol impairment nor does it definitively indicate beverage alcohol consumption. Individuals that are diabetic and have a bacterial infection can have fermentation and show positive on a urine-ethanol test which would never be a violation of company policy. National Drug Screening strongly recommends against urine ethanol testing of applicants or employees.
When to Use Alcohol Testing
If you have taken methaqualone and are suffering from any of the symptoms associated with the drug, you should contact emergency personnel immediately. Unfortunately, one of the most significant problems with the medication is that people often take too mFor employers, the best time to perform alcohol testing is when you have reasonable suspicion that a worker is impaired or intoxicated and also for post-accident testing. For either situation, call out a tester to perform the testing or bring the individual to the clinic for the alcohol testing. You do not want to let this person drive when there is the possibility they are intoxicated. Safety first, but always test when you have reasonable suspicion. You need the documentation of the test results in case there is any adverse action to take. Always document everything very carefully.
National Drug Screening has available drug and alcohol specialists for your alcohol testing needs. Always call for expert assistance For any drug test and alcohol test it is important that the right test is done in the right way. Always consult with an expert.