What are the physical qualification requirements for operating a CMV in interstate commerce?
NOTE: This guidance was rescinded on March 22, 2022, and is no longer in effect. Please see revised guidance FMCSA-MED-391.41-Q3(2022-01-21).
Question 3: What are the physical qualification requirements for operating a CMV in interstate commerce?
Guidance: The physical qualification regulations for drivers in interstate commerce are found at §391.41. Instructions to medical examiners performing physical examinations of these drivers are found at §391.43.
The qualification standards cover 13 areas which directly relate to the driving function. All but four of the standards require a judgement by the medical examiner. A person’s qualification to drive is determined by a medical examiner who is knowledgeable about the driver’s functions and whether a particular condition would interfere with the driver’s ability to operate a CMV safely. In the case of vision, hearing, and epilepsy, the current standards are absolute, providing no discretion to the medical examiner. However, drivers who do not meet the current requirements may apply for an exemption as provided by 49 CFR part 381.