A Word of Caution

Marijuana plant and cannabis oil bottles isolated

I’ve been reading about cannabidiol — CBD — oils being used as a natural alternative to pain medicine. According to an article in Work Truck Magazine, it’s noted that the use of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is

“forbidden for a regulated driver, no matter the source.”

The article stated: “The cannabis sativa plant comes in two strains, each has the potential to produce CBD oils. Each genetic variation was created for specific purposes.” The hemp strain is used for fiber, clothing, construction, oils and nutritional benefits with a 0.3 percent THC concentration, and the marijuana strain is bred for “production of THC in resinous glands in its flowers and leaves” with a 5-30 percent THC concentration.

The THC concentration is dependent upon the manufacturing process and how much oil the individual is using, which is why CBD oils can register at a level that is considered a DOT drug testing violation. To avoid any misunderstandings surrounding the use of CBD oils, a word of caution should be communicated to your drivers.

“Their career may be on the line if a drug screen comes back positive.”

Some points to cover with your drivers include:

  • Trace amounts of THC may show up in a DOT urine specimen
  • MRO’s or medical review officers, won’t accept CBD oil as a valid medical explanation for a positive DOT drug test
  • Labels don’t tell the whole story, because even if the packaging for CBD claims to be THC-free or below traceable limits, they may contain enough to be detected during a drug screen
  • CBD oils sold in state where marijuana is legal may have been processed from the marijuana plant and might result in a higher concentration of THC
  • Officers are unable to determine the concentration of THC in the oil and if found in a commercial vehicle might be considered possession

I think communication and a word of caution should help, and — as the article stated — with the understanding that any “CBD or THC use is potentially a violation waiting to happen.”


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