Commercial drivers of trucks, buses, and other methods of transportation must be in the best possible health. As such, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FACSA) has established certain requirements for licensure, including passing a comprehensive physical examination every 24 months. What follows here are the things commercial drivers need to know about these Department of Transportation (DOT) assessments.
What Is a DOT Examination, And Why Is It Important?
First and foremost, passing a medical exam is a crucial step toward getting and maintaining a commercial driver’s license (CDL).This physical evaluation ensures that you are physically capable of safely operating a commercial vehicle out on the highway. It also serves as a measure of public safety that drivers of heavy vehicles are not suffering from any conditions that could impair their ability to drive.
The head-to-toe medical exam is conducted by a certified medical examiner. This healthcare provider has been approved by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. During the exam at Cardinal Urgent Care in King, NC, the provider assesses several aspects of health and physical function, including vision, hearing, blood pressure, heart rate, overall wellness, strength, and endurance. The examiner will also review your medical history, including any medications you may be taking, along with past surgeries, injuries, or illnesses.
When you come to our urgent care center for your examination, bring with you the following documentation:
- Photo ID
- Completed medical history form
- A list of any current medications
- Glasses, contacts, hearing aids, or other assistive devices
- A documented record of blood sugar levels if you are diabetic
Also, be well-rested and properly hydrated for your DOT examination because fatigue and dehydration definitely can change assessment results, such as blood pressure. Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing, and avoid all alcohol or caffeine before your physical examination.
- Pre-employment and post-offer drug screenings
- Post-accident drug tests
- Random drug testing
- Follow-up drug testing as needed
What Can Disqualify Eligibility For a Commercial Driver’s License?
When applying for a commercial driver’s license (CDL), you should know that there are certain factors that can disqualify you. These include:
- Drug and/or alcohol abuse: Any history of drug or alcohol abuse can be grounds for disqualification.
- Criminal record: Certain criminal convictions, such as those involving drugs or violence, may disqualify a licensing candidate or existing driver.
- Poor driving record: A history of serious traffic violations or accidents raises concerns about the ability to safely operate a commercial vehicle.
- Physical limitations: Commercial drivers must meet certain physical requirements in order to perform their job duties safely. This includes the ability to tolerate the stresses of operating a large commercial vehicle for long hours and in many different kinds of weather and road conditions and stringent delivery schedules.
The DOT Medical Card Gets You on the Road
If you pass your DOT medical examination, you will receive a DOT medical card as proof that you are mentally and physically fit enough to operate a truck or bus on the highways of the United States. Most holders must renew these cards every two years. Some medical exceptions require renewal sooner than that.
Be sure you carry your DOT medical card with you when you drive. If law enforcement asks you to produce your card, you must be able to show it and that it is current.
When it comes to driving commercially, safety is the number one priority. This is why certain physical requirements must be met in order for a person to legally operate a large commercial vehicle. These requirements are important not only for the safety of the driver but also for the safety of other drivers and passengers on the road.
DOT Medical Cards in King, North Carolina
When you take on the responsibility of operating a commercial vehicle, you must prove that you can tolerate the rigors of doing so. At Cardinal Urgent Care, we strictly follow the rules set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, ensuring that physical and mental requirements are fully met.
If you need a medical exam to obtain or maintain your DOT card, please come to Cardinal Urgent Care from Wednesdays through Saturdays. You can receive your examination on an easy, walk-in basis, or you may call ahead for an appointment at (336) 983-9111.Also, you have the option of requesting your visit here. We look forward to serving you.