Certain commercial drivers are required to take a DOT physical exam every 24 months to prove that they are healthy enough to perform their duties.
The most important safety feature for any commercial driver is the driver themselves.
Because truck drivers operate such heavy and dangerous machinery, they are required to abide by federal regulations regarding driver medical requirements; namely, they must undergo a physical examination to prove they are healthy enough to perform their job's duties. Negative consequences await trucking companies that hire unfit drivers.
Under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), truckers are required to undergo the medical certification process to ensure that they are physically qualified to meet the demands of their job. Every driver needs to take a DOT (Department of Transportation) physical exam with an examiner every 24 months.
These licensed medical examiners may include the following:
In some cases, certification may be valid for less than 24 months if the examiner determines that the driver in question has a condition such as high blood pressure that needs to be monitored more closely.
Beginning in 2012, commercial drivers are required to provide medical certification status to state driver licensing agencies to obtain a "certified" medical status on their driving record. This law is only required for interstate non-excepted and intrastate non-excepted commercial drivers.
Once a commercial driver's license is revoked, an employer is no longer permitted to allow this driver to operate one of the vehicles. If a driver is found with a revoked driver's license, the driver and the employer will face severe penalties, ranging from termination of job to jail time.
According to the FMCSA, drivers can also be disqualified if they use the following the medications:
In some cases, there may be exceptions for drivers who have received written proof from a doctor stating that they are safe to operate commercial motor vehicle while taking their medication.
In these situations, it will be up to the examiner to determine whether or not to qualify them. Currently, drivers using marijuana cannot become certified, whether it is being used medically or recreationally.
Do you have more questions about CMV driver medical requirements? Contact Arnold & Itkin today!