FOI request detail

Drug and alcohol testing

Request ID: FOI-0530-2223
Date published: 30 June 2022

You asked

Can you please explain in detail the process of selection on unannounced testing as per guidelines. Will operational staff only be selected and what is the method of selection for non operational staff i.e. gate line staff. Can non-operational staff who hold operational license be shortlisted in the same way, please also provide ethical guidelines on this if applicable.

We answered

Our ref: FOI-0530-2223/GH

Thank you for your request received by Transport for London (TfL) on 3 June 2022 asking for information about drug and alcohol testing.

Your request has been considered under the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and our information access policy. I can confirm that we do hold the information you require.

The unannounced testing requirement is carried out on all staff classified as Safety Critical according to the requirements of their role, in addition to CSA2 post holders whom work on the unpaid side on the gate lines. Unannounced testing is carried out anytime - weekdays, weekends and nights as part of a planned programme in accordance with medical practices and standards. Managers are not informed and take no part in the planning of unannounced testing in their area. The dates and locations are strictly confidential and managed within the Occupational Health Drug and Alcohol testing cohort. Unannounced testing, is carried out every period and all Safety Critical staff members from across all areas are eligible for testing throughout the year. All testing is carried out by an independent collection Agency.

‘For Cause’ Drugs and Alcohol testing can also be carried on an employee if an authorised manager suspects an employee may not be fit or is impaired from carrying out their duties due to taking alcohol or drugs. This would be carried out locally at the employee’s workplace on all non-operational staff working for TfL and London Underground.

The process for Selection for unannounced testing

Managers are not responsible for the selection of the employees to be tested.  National Insurance numbers logged on our SAP employment system are used to generate and produce a random list of names of safety critical staff to be tested at the location concerned. The D&A Co-Ordinator takes to the location the produced list of names from SAP which does include management. The D&A Co-Ordinator goes through the list calling out the names from the top to the bottom identifying staff to be tested.  Those who are not available to be tested, a reason is entered against their name.
Each employee selected for testing is required to conduct a LUOH briefing before signing the necessary forms and the independent collection officer carrying out the drugs and alcohol testing.

If this is not the information you are looking for, please do not hesitate to contact me.

If you are not satisfied with this response please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.

Yours sincerely

Graham Hurt
FOI Case Officer
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

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