Breath Alcohol Test for Employment

Breath Test for Alcohol: How Does It Work?

When applying for a job, applicants may be required to be screened for drug and alcohol use. This is usually part of the application process and this is known as pre-employment drug and alcohol testing. Many private employers don’t conduct an alcohol test for job applicants as this is not a requirement from the government. However, depending on state law and company policy, they may do so before making an offer to the applicant.

There are a number of employment-related drug and alcohol tests used by employers. One of those tests includes breath alcohol tests. What are breath alcohol tests and why do employers use them as part of pre-employment screening for alcohol use?

What is a Breath Alcohol Test?

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When you drink alcohol, it goes directly into your stomach and the small intestine. The alcohol is then absorbed into the blood. It will be carried through your body and into your brain, lungs, and other parts of your body. Because of the alcohol’s presence in the blood, it can be smelled when you exhale.

A breath alcohol test measures how much alcohol is in the air you breathe out. It shows the current levels of impairment or intoxication of the person. Unlike drug testing, alcohol breath tests do not show past use. The device used in breath alcohol test measures how much alcohol content is in the blood. If you have a blood alcohol content of 0.2 and above, it means that you have a positive result.

The consumption of 2 or more alcoholic beverages within the hour prior to your breath alcohol test will result in a positive blood alcohol content. Your blood alcohol content may rise just 15 minutes after drinking alcohol. In general, even an ounce of alcohol stays in a person’s body for an hour.

Screening devices used in this test are just about the size of an old-fashioned mobile phone. The applicant will blow into a disposable mouthpiece. The whole process of the test will just take around a minute before the results are generated.

Breath alcohol tests are done to prevent accidents and ensure the safety of the person. It is important to note that as your blood alcohol content rises, you become negligent and clumsy. This may impair the judgment of the person. drug and alcohol driving tests are usually done to drivers who are caught speeding or in an accident. However, this can also be done to job applicants.

Many employers conduct breath alcohol test to make it clear to the applicants that they do not tolerate any kind of alcohol abuse in their practice. Drug and alcohol testing is usually included in the employee handbook to ensure that the employees know about the companies policies and practices. Refusal by an applicant to submit to alcohol testing may be one of the reasons as to not get the job.

The United States Department of Transportation specifies when applicants can be tested for alcohol as part of the application process. The first one is when the testing must be performed to all the job applicants for a specific position. Secondly, during the post-offer requirement.

What is the Alcohol Breath Test Limit?

Blood alcohol concentration or blood alc (BAC) is the level of alcohol in your bloodstream that will be tested. The legal limit in the US when driving for the BAC is 0.08.  According to the Alcohol and Drug Foundation, the average size to stay under the limit for men is not more than 2 standard drinks in the first hour and 1 drink per hour after that while not more than 1 standard drink per hour for women. The BAC limit for jobs that involves managing a motor vehicle like driving public or heavy vehicles, operating machinery, commercial vessels or mobile plant is zero (0.00%).

Alcohol Screening Test for Employment

An Alcohol Screening test refers to the process of determining if a person’s drinking has reached a problematic level. This helps the employers in checking on their employees that are showing signs of frequent alcohol consumption. According to the WHO, the test was developed to screen for excessive drinking and assessment.

Legal Issues Relevant

There are actually no federal laws that prohibit employers from conducting alcohol or drug tests to their applicants or employees. However, there are individual states that restrict employers from doing random drug testing to employees other than those that are in safety-sensitive positions. These are the employees that are in the transportation industry such as those people who work in trucking, railroad, aviation, and maritime.

In addition, it is also important to note that someone with a history of alcoholism may also qualify under the Americans with Disabilities Act and other federal statutes that deal with anti-discrimination.

The Takeaway

It is important for employers to ensure that all the job applicants are safe and would not cause any reckless or negligent actions towards themselves or others should they get hired for a position. This is the reason why employers conduct alcohol testing to their job applicants. Should you have any questions about the breath alcohol test, you can visit Gurmu OccMed Svs. To schedule an appointment, visit 500 Greenfield, Ave, Hanford, CA or call us at (559) 587-5587.

Breath Alcohol Test for Employment
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