November 16, 2011
CDL holders will need to submit copies of medical certification
Starting January 30, 2012, Oregon DMV will require commercial truck and bus drivers to submit a photocopy of their medical certificate to continue holding a commercial driver license. The new requirement is part of federal safety regulations aimed at making sure CDL holders are medically fit to operate commercial vehicles.
The federal regulations require that state DMVs withdraw commercial driving privileges for drivers who do not maintain medical qualifications for their type of commercial vehicle operation.
All commercial drivers will need to submit a photocopy of their valid medical card to DMV to obtain and retain a CDL or commercial instruction permit by January 30, 2014. Because medical standards for holding a CDL are dependent upon driving type, federal regulations also require drivers to certify the type of driving they do or might do.
Drivers with a CDL that expires before January 30, 2014, must submit a photocopy of their medical certificate when they renew their license. CDL holders whose commercial license expires after January 30, 2014, will receive a request from DMV to submit a photocopy of their medical card and certify their driving type. If a driver does not submit a photocopy of a valid medical card and driving-type certification when requested, DMV will send the driver a CDL cancellation notice that is effective 30 days later.
When a driver's medical card expires, the driver must submit a photocopy of his or her new medical card. DMV will send the driver a CDL cancellation notice if a medical card submitted to DMV expires before receipt of a new medical card. The driver can stop a cancellation from going into effect by submitting a photocopy of a valid medical card to DMV or by surrendering commercial driving privileges.
DMV recommends that the best way for commercial drivers to protect their driving privileges and avoid a potential roadside notification that their CDL has been cancelled is to ensure that DMV has a current mailing address, as required by Oregon law. This ensures that drivers receive all notifications from DMV.
Trucking companies that have a Record Inquiry Account with DMV and use the Automated Reporting Service will be notified when one of their employees has a pending CDL cancellation for failing to submit a medical card as required. However, employers should continue monitoring the expiration dates of employee medical cards for their own records.
Commercial drivers will be able to mail, fax or hand-deliver a copy of their current medical certificate to Oregon DMV. Due to privacy concerns and other issues, DMV cannot accept copies of the full Medical Examination Report in lieu of the medical card/certificate. Additional details will be found at OregonDMV.com before the regulations take effect in January 2012.
By the time all provisions are fully implemented in 2014, law enforcement and licensing agencies in other states will have electronic access to a driver's CDL medical status. The CDL medical status also will be available on driver records requested by employers. This will eventually eliminate the need for most drivers of commercial motor vehicles to carry a medical card and the need for employers to maintain a copy of the card in driver files.
DMV mailed a letter to CDL holders on October 28 to explain the new requirements. DMV also posted frequently asked questions about new CDL medical certification requirements at http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/DMV/faqs/CDLMedCert.shtml.