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ST Aerospace fined for failing to do background checks

Feb 10, 2011 Matt Roesly

The Federal Aviation Administration recently announced it will fine ST Aerospace more than $1 million for failing to conduct pre-employment drug tests. Allegedly, the aerospace engineering firm defied FAA regulations by not waiting to receive negative drug test results before allowing job applicants to perform safety-sensitive functions. The alleged violation occurred between March 2007 and May 2008, before the company changed its name from San Antonio Aerospace to ST Aerospace. "Required pre-employment drug testing is an important part of the government’s effort to ensure safety at all levels of transportation," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "We take these violations very seriously." ST Aerospace struck back against the allegations, saying it takes its safety obligations seriously and has controls to monitor compliance with the FAA's drug testing standards. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, drug screening is not the only precaution employers must take before signing new hires. Pre-employment screenings can also flag a potential employee's credit rating and any history of drug use, crime or violence. The Bureau reported an average of 564 work-related homicides each year in the United States between 2004 and 2008, the most recent dates available.