Fingerprint drug testing adopted by Masterson

Construction group Masterson Holdings has brought random drug testing in-house with a new fingerprint testing system to screen employees.

Masterson will use the fingerprint drug test across its operating companies, Getjar, the concrete frame and groundwork specialist, its Atlantic Contracts carpentry and joinery business, and Glencoe Plant Services.

The fingerprint method was chosen ahead of urine and saliva tests because it is easier to use on site, with results available on site in 10 minutes.

Masterson has now introduced random drug testing for all employees.

Its system is supplied by Intelligent Fingerprinting, a company spun out from the University of East Anglia in 2007.

Ten fingerprint sweat samples are collected onto small, tamper-evident drug screening cartridge in a process which takes less than a minute. The portable analysis unit then reads the cartridge and provides a positive or negative result on-screen for all drugs in the test in 10 minutes. A fingerprint based laboratory confirmation service is also available.

Andrew Chowings, group SHEQ director of Getjar, said: “As a contractor, we have a drug usage health & safety policy for our employees on-site safety, and adopting the Intelligent Fingerprinting solution allows us to carry out tests quickly, easily and more unobtrusively when compared to urine tests for example”.

“However, as a reputable family business, we wanted to go a step further. Instead of relying on external parties to fulfil our drug testing, we can now bring the function in-house, proactively introducing drug testing as part of our employee wellbeing initiatives. There are, of course, urine and saliva drug tests on the market but the fingerprint method fitted the bill for us as we are able to test our employees ourselves – at a random time to suit us, with rapid on-site results. It is also extremely quick and ‘clean’ with no unhygienic bodily fluids used as part of the process”.

“As part of a broader employee wellbeing initiative, we have also introduced random drug testing for all our employees, from directors to labourers. The programme has been in play for a few months now and the response from our employees has been extremely positive – we’ve even had volunteers as they are intrigued by the innovative finger-based testing technology. We’ve now adopted Intelligent Fingerprinting into our health and safety and wellbeing policies, and randomly test a part of the business every 12 weeks”, he added.