Commercial truck drivers must meet certain medical requirements in order to receive and maintain a commercial driver’s license (CDL). They must have a medical evaluation and certification that they are free of certain physical and mental disorders and conditions. These include heart conditions, respiratory problems, high blood pressure, epilepsy, orthopedic conditions, psychiatric disorders, mental illness, drug or alcohol addiction, and vision or hearing deficiencies. Truck drivers must undergo regular medical checkups to ensure they remain healthy so that they may continue to hold a CDL and drive a commercial vehicle. However, truck drivers have been known to get around medical requirements in different ways and continue to drive commercial trucks despite potentially dangerous medical issues. If you have been injured by a truck driver with medical problems, you should contact a Clayton County truck accident attorney to help you hold that driver responsible for his actions.
Many truck drivers with health problems have found medical professionals who are willing to give them a clean bill of health and certify them to drive commercial vehicles despite their medical conditions. Even more worrisome is that when word gets around that one doctor is willing to fudge the results of a medical exam, many other unhealthy truck drivers will go to that doctor to get their certifications, as well. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) estimates there may be 600,000 truck drivers on the road with dangerous medical issues due to these false medical exams.
In response, the FMCSA has created a new program called the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners. Truck drivers will be required to obtain certification from one of a pre-approved medical professional the FMCSA trusts and who knows the standards for commercial truck driver health requirements. This program should hopefully work to keep unhealthy truck drivers from operating commercial vehicles and should reduce accidents.
If you have been injured in a truck accident, you should contact the Law Offices of Shane Smith at (770) 487-8999 to schedule a consultation with an experienced truck accident lawyer today.