A Department of Transportation (DOT) physical is a health examination mandated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) for commercial motor vehicle drivers. A DOT physical determines if a driver is suitable to operate a commercial motor vehicle.
How Do I know if I NEED A DOT PHYSICAL?
You may be required to pass a DOT physical if you:
- Operate a motor vehicle for interstate commerce with a gross combination weight rating, gross vehicle weight rating, or gross combination weight of over 10,000 pounds.
- Transport hazardous materials
What is included in a DOT PHYSICAL?
Drivers are required to have at least 20/40 acuity in each eye with or without correction. They are also required to have at least 70 degrees peripheral in the horizontal field of vision in each eye.
Drivers must be able to distinguish a forced whisper at a distance of 5ft or less, with or without a hearing aid.
The driver's blood pressure is an integral part of the DOT certification. A driver’s blood pressure must be below 140/90 or they may not qualify for their DOT card.
A urinalysis test looks for indications of underlying medical conditions such as diabetes.
The physical exam will cover different body systems:
- General Appearance
- Genito-urinary system including hernias
- Neurological system including reflexes
- Vascular system
what to bring to your DOT PHYSICAL
Applicants need to bring a list of their prescription medications.
Applicants with certain medical conditions need to bring the appropriate documents or items. For example:
- Applicants with vision or hearing problems must bring their eyeglasses, contacts, or hearing aids
- Applicants with diabetes should bring in the most recent lab results indicating their Hemoglobin A1C level and their blood sugar logs.
- Applicants who have heart issues may need a letter from their cardiologist detailing their medical history and medications. They may also need to bring in results of a recent EKG, stress test, or echocardiogram.
- Applicants that have sleep apnea and use a CPAP machine should bring in at least 90 days’ worth of data indicating compliance/proper use of their CPAP.