LexisNexis Risk Solutions announced Nov. 15 the results of the third annual LexisNexis 2012 Commercial Driver Safety Report: Industry Insights, Analysis and Trending, designed to help trucking companies hire drivers smarter.

According to the study, false or unverifiable history rose 9% from 2008-2012 — topping this year at 38.97%. In addition, employment verifications tripled in volume during the first half of 2012, possibly indicating that companies are experiencing a driver shortage and are processing more applicants though electronic means.

The report also shows the surprising impact of federal and state regulatory changes on commercial driver fleets. When the Department of Transportation (DOT) lowered drug-testing cut-off levels for cocaine in 2010, the industry expected to see a jump in positivity rates. While the LexisNexis report shows the predicted increase in 2011, it also reveals an unexpected decrease by 11 percentage points in 2012. For many employers, this could be a potential barometer of program effectiveness. Most employers are conforming to new DOT guidelines by effectively managing their driver compliance programs to accommodate these regulatory changes.

“Today, compliance within the commercial motor vehicle industry is more complex and employers are working hard to monitor and keep pace with these regulatory changes,” said Lee Rivas, senior VP and general manager of screening for LexisNexis.

Other key report insights include:

  • Most identified reasons for noncompliant driver qualification files: missing or incomplete applications.
  • Most identified items missing from driver qualification files: MVR (Motor Vehicle Record).
  • Most common reason for a limited medical card: hypertension (third year in this spot).
  • Most common drug on the rise: amphetamines (positivity rates more than doubled from 12% in 2011 to 26% in 2012).

The full report is available at http://lexisnexis.com/risk/commercialdriver.