If you have a Commercial Driver’s License, or CDL, you are required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to pass a medical examination every two years. If you are in good health, you will pass this Department of Transportation (DOT) physical and receive a laminated card which proves your fitness to be a driver.
Here are a few tips for making your DOT physical examination as easy and hassle-free as possible.
1. Understand That You Must Get This Examination Every 2 Years
Transporting heavy freight, passengers, or hazardous materials in the United States on interstate highways is a big responsibility. Lives depend on your ability to handle that big rig or bus, and on your mental and emotional stamina to endure long, arduous hours at the wheel. So, comply with the federal laws. Do not postpone your assessment or try to avoid meeting any of its requirements.
2. Be Ready for a Complete Head-to-Toe Assessment
Wear comfortable clothes to the occupational health clinic. During the physical, your provider will check your:
- Vital signs, including blood pressure
- Vision and hearing acuity
- Blood glucose levels (for diabetes)
- Blood for illegal substances
- Ear, nose, and throat
- Muscular strength and endurance
Your provider also will review your medical history and check your current medication list and any test results you may have from your primary care doctor or medical specialist. Be sure to bring all documentation with you, along with glasses or assistive listening devices you routinely need.
3. Rest and Eat Well the Day Before Your Examination
This is no time to be sleep deprived or to try to shed a few unwanted pounds. In fact, in the weeks prior to your test, concentrate on a healthy diet and routine aerobic exercise. These habits will positively impact your weight and overall condition, and improve your likelihood of passing the assessment
4. Complete the FMCSA Medical Exam Form Before of Your Appointment.
This will save you time when you come to the provider’s office. If you have questions on how to complete portions of the form, your provider will assist you.
5.Apply for Exemptions Ahead of Time
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration can grant exemptions for some elements of the physical requirements. If you believe you qualify for an exemption, be sure to apply for them in advance as it can take up to 180 days to receive an approval. You must supply your medical records and DMV records, including your driving history and other information, for proper evaluation of your case.
DOT Physical in Grand Junction, Colorado
At WorkPartners Occupational Health, we provide many workers’ compensation and employment-related services, including physical evaluations for truck drivers, commercial and recreational pilots, and more. To learn more about your upcoming FMCSA assessment, call us today at (970) 241-5585, or request your DOT physical exam appointment online.