The new driver physical requirement has been put in place this year by the DOT as an important part of keeping America’s roads and highways safe. Let’s take a look at what it is and what you need to do to keep compliant with the new health exam requirements.
What is the new 2022 DOT Physical?
The new 2022 DOT physical is a health exam required of commercial drivers by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to ensure that commercial drivers are capable of fulfilling their job. This exam must be completed by a DOT medical examiner and documented every 24 months.
Are All Drivers Required to Get a DOT Physical?
This requirement applies to the following classifications of drivers:
- Drivers who transport hazardous materials
- Drivers who are paid to operate a vehicle that carries over 8 people
- Drivers who operate a vehicle that carries more than 15 people
- Drivers who operate a vehicle with a gross combined weight of over 10,000 pounds
What does the Physical Consist of?
The DOT exam will cover:
- Health history
- Vision assessment
- Hearing test
- Blood pressure
As well as a number of other health factors that can indicate a risk while operating a commercial vehicle.
What Factors Might Disqualify a Driver?
Here are a few guidelines and some minimum requirements for drivers to pass their exam:
- 20/40 vision in each eye (with or without glasses); 70+ degrees field of vision; the ability to distinguish between red, green, and yellow.
- The hearing test requires you to hear a harsh whisper in your best ear
- Blood pressure below 180/100; blood pressure between 140/90 and 179/109 may require an annual exam.
- Medical conditions, such as diabetes, hernias, obesity, and sleep apnea that are not in control
- Uncontrolled or unstable heart conditions
- Epilepsy or seizure disorders
- Meniere’s disease, an inner ear disorder that causes dizziness
- Use of marijuana, even if prescribed
- Use of illegal substances
- Use of oxygen therapy
- Some respiratory conditions
What You Need to Know for Compliance
Just like any other DOT requirement, if your driver is caught without a medical certificate, they are taken off the road and you will pay for it. Not just in fines, but in the business that is impacted by the loss of a driver.
As driver requirements are changed, increased, and refined, it is so important to have a way to track which of your drivers complies and who may be coming due for their next medical exam.
Take a look at DQMConnect. This amazing application is helping many companies address the same concerns. Real-time alerts and a dashboard view of your driver compliance, puts you in control.
Keep your company safe, your drivers compliant, and your clients happy with DQMConnect.
“One thing you may not be doing that can affect your DOT!”
Every year at renewal your insurance agency must file your new policies with the FMCSA and Motor Carrier Permit division. Failure to do this can result in your authority being revoked and your MCP to be inactive. Both permits are a foundational permit that can put your operations to a halt. Make sure you are communicating with your insurance agency to ensure they are filing your updated policies on time.
US DOT: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/registration/insurance-filing-requirements (link to insurance requirements)
Motor Carrier Permit: Form MC-65 M. This form can also be filed online at https://www.mcinfo.org/MCInfo/login.
**Both Liability Insurance and Workers’ Compensation must be filed if your company falls under Workers’ Compensation requirement per CA Insurance regulations.
The worst event in professional transportation is almost here again. Roadcheck 2022, a 72-hour regulatory enforcement event, is set to begin on May 17 and last through May 19. For those three days, inspectors will be empowered to pull over any commercial motor vehicles at random for on-the-spot inspections and paperwork verification.
For newer operations, or drivers, this can be a shock – and potentially bring expensive penalties. here’s what you need to know.
Preparing For Roadcheck 2022
The first thing to know is that every annual Roadcheck event has a specific focus, an area of compliance that inspectors will focus on. This year, the theme is wheel end compliance. In fairness, as wheel-related problems are believed to cause roughly 25% of accidents, it’s understandable why this would be a focus.
So above all, you must ensure your vehicles’ wheels, hubs, and tires are in top condition. Any violations will be met with steep penalties.
The inspectors will specifically be looking for:
- Loose, missing, or broken wheel fasteners
- Any damage to rims, inside and out
- Unseated locking rings, or damaged locking rings
- Lubricant leaks
- Missing caps and plugs
- Tire leaks, including valve stem issues
- Tire inflation violations
To be clear, inspectors will not solely focus on the wheels. All aspects of the vehicle may be inspected, including the brakes, cargo containers, couplings, exhaust, driveshafts, even the windshield wipers. Your vehicles need to be in top condition!
In addition, paperwork will also be examined. This is where good driver file software management can be a big help. Your drivers will be expected to produce up-to-date medical cards demonstrating their physical capability, as well as documenting any relevant medical issues. Their driver’s licenses will be run, and they may be forced to produce other pertinent certifications and documentation as well. If you are maintaining your records well, it will be far easier for you to ensure all your drivers’ paperwork is in order, and that they have proper documentation ready on demand.
We Provide Cutting-Edge Driver File Software Solutions
Vehicle Licensing Consultants specializes in helping transportation companies manage and navigate the bureaucracy of the transport industry. Our software solutions can manage every aspect of your Driver Qualification files, providing warnings as needed when information is out-of-date, or critical deadlines are coming. With DQMConnect™ on your side, passing the paperwork side of Roadcheck 2022 will be much easier.
There’s still time to get in compliance. Click here to request a free 30-day trial of DQMConnect™!
Are you aware that you may be required to keep driver qualification files for your non-CDL drivers?
Yes, it is true. DOT requirements are not limited to CDL drivers. DOT compliance is determined by vehicle weight. So, even if you only have non-CDL drivers, you may still need to maintain driver qualification files.
At VLC, we understand the challenges of sifting through all the rules and regulations necessary for your company to stay in compliance. So, we are covering a few important points and urging you to contact us if you have any more details questions or concerns.
While you only need a CDL for a vehicle that is 26,001 pounds or greater, there are circumstances that require you to maintain driver qualification files for non-CDL drivers. Here is the list to help you stay in compliance:
- Any interstate driver of a vehicle that has a GVW (gross vehicle weight) of over 10,000 pounds.
- Any interstate driver of a vehicle that has a GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating) of over 10,000 pounds.
- Any interstate driver of a vehicle that has a GCW (gross combination weight) of over 10,000 pounds.
- Any interstate driver of a vehicle that has a GCWR (gross combination weight rating) of over 10,000 pounds.
- Any driver transporting hazardous materials.
- Any driver transporting more than 8 people for compensation (count includes the driver)
- Any driver transporting more than 15 people with no compensation (count includes the driver).
.. Therefore, you might only have non-CDL drivers and still need to maintain DOT compliance.
As a word of caution, requirements do change slightly from state to state. Contact VLC for your state’s commercial motor vehicles requirements. In summary, even if you only have non-CDL drivers, you may still need to maintain driver qualification files. Let us show you how to get started, quickly and easily with DQMConnect™. Driver qualification file management (including hiring, onboarding, secure storage, and renewals) has NEVER been easier!
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Fleet & Driver Compliance…Fleet Tracking Software
If you’re a DOT-regulated company, then you know that audits are a regular part of life. The DOT Safety Measurement System (SMS) has increased the number of targeted audits in recent years, so it’s more important than ever to make sure that your business is prepared. In this article, we’ll discuss how to prepare for a DOT audit using Whip Around, an easy-to-use inspections and maintenance tool. We’ll also provide a checklist for DOT audits and explain why it’s so important to be prepared with comprehensive DOT driver qualification files.
Avoid Confusion with File Disorganization
One of the biggest challenges in preparing for a DOT audit is avoiding confusion with file disorganization. This is where Whip Around can be really helpful. With Whip Around, users can quickly and easily complete inspections and maintenance reports for vehicles and assets.
The intuitive interface makes it easy to find the information you need, and the report templates make it easy to organize your data. This can be a real lifesaver during an audit when DOT inspectors will be looking for specific information.
Prepare for the Four Types of DOT Audits
There are four common types of DOT audits: compliance, safety, security, and hazardous materials. Each of these audits has its own set of requirements, so it’s important to be prepared.
– Compliance audits focus on ensuring that your company is in compliance with DOT regulations. This includes things like driver qualification files, drug and alcohol testing programs, and record-keeping.
– Safety audits are designed to identify and correct safety hazards. These audits will check things like driver safety training, vehicle inspection and maintenance programs, and collision reporting procedures.
– Hazardous materials audits are designed to ensure that your company is complying with DOT’s hazmat regulations. This includes things like shipping papers, placarding, and emergency response procedures.
– Security audits are designed to ensure that your company is taking the necessary steps to protect its employees and customers from terrorist threats. These audits may focus on topics like driver screening, cargo security, and facility security.
The DOT checklist below will help you prepare for any type of DOT audit:
– Make sure that you have a comprehensive DOT driver qualification file. This file should include all of the information required by DOT regulations, including driver safety performance data and drug and alcohol test results.
– Review your compliance with DOT regulations. Make sure that you are aware of all the DOT regulations that apply to your company and that you are in compliance with them.
– Conduct safety audits to identify and correct safety hazards. Having an automated system in place will help you identify issues before they become a problem for any potential audit.
– Conduct security audits to ensure the security of your DOT-regulated products and transportation systems. Doing this internally will put you ahead of any issues in an audit.
– Make sure that you comply with DOT regulations for handling hazardous materials. These audits are the least common, however, the fines can be high if you are found to not be compliant, so it is a good policy to keep up to date and compliant in this area as well.
What makes a driver qualification file DOT-compliant?
A DOT driver qualification file is DOT-compliant if it contains all of the information required by DOT regulations. This includes driver safety performance data, drug and alcohol test results, and other information as specified by DOT regulations.
It could also include information about driver training and safety programs, so you should keep these records for as long as you have DOT-regulated drivers, and are still working for your company.
How does a system like Whip Around help for your DOT compliance?
A system like Whip Around helps DOT compliance by providing an easy and efficient way to complete DOT inspections and maintenance reports. With Whip Around, users can quickly find the information they need and generate detailed reports that are DOT-compliant. This can help you avoid confusion during a DOT audit and ensure that your business is in compliance with all DOT regulations.
Additionally, even when there is no DOT audit looming on the horizon, a system like Whip Around can be an invaluable tool for safety and compliance. With regular DOT inspections and maintenance reports, you can stay on top of any potential safety or compliance issues before they become a problem.
Overall, having one central system managing DOT inspections and maintenance reports gives your company the overview it needs with added in-depth insights that would otherwise be impossible to find manually.
Why Does the Department of Transportation Do Audits for DOT Compliance?
The DOT Safety Measurement System (SMS) is a computer-based system that measures the safety performance of DOT-regulated companies. The SMS uses data from roadside inspections and other sources to calculate safety scores for individual companies and for groups of companies. These scores are used by the DOT to determine which companies will be audited.
The DOT is increasing the number of targeted audits in response to the high number of safety violations that are currently being detected. It is, therefore, more important than ever to make sure that your business is prepared for an audit.
What is the DOT looking for?
DOT inspectors are looking for evidence that your company complies with DOT regulations. Fines can be hefty for DOT violations, so it’s important to make sure that you are in compliance. DOT inspectors will also be looking for safety hazards and security vulnerabilities or anything that could compromise the integrity and quality of your operation.
Always Be Prepared
Being prepared for a DOT audit can save you time and money, and it can help you avoid penalties and fines. The DOT Safety Measurement System is increasing the number of targeted audits, so it’s more important than ever to make sure that your business is prepared.
Audits Are Increasing, Gear Up Now!
The DOT has been increasing the number of targeted audits in recent years, and that trend is likely to continue. Don’t get caught off guard, and get the best advice from Vehicle Licensing Consultants to prepare for your DOT audit.