FMCSA enhances medical examinations of commercial drivers

Crisp County residents may be interested in the new rules for commercial drivers. In the spring of 2012, the U.S. Transportation Secretary announced a new rule that is aimed at protecting everyone on our nation's roadways by enhancing the standards that healthcare professionals must meet in order to perform medical examinations on truck and bus drivers. Pursuant to the new rule, health care professionals must be specially trained, tested and certified on the things that physically affect a driver's ability to drive safely.

Preventing crashes with commercial vehicles

Crashes with commercial vehicles are often some of the most serious because of the sheer differences between the sizes of commercial vehicles and passenger vehicles. Commercial drivers must undergo a medical examination every two years to keep their commercial drivers' licenses; right now about three million exams are performed every year. These medical examinations help to make sure that drivers meet all of the qualifications for driving safely.

There are many requirements that commercial drivers should meet in order to be able to drive safely on the road. Unlike most drivers, commercial drivers are driving for long periods of time and carry very heavy loads. As a result, commercial drivers must have a number of aspects of their health examined, including their vision, hearing, cardiovascular fitness, respiratory functions and muscular functions. The U.S. Transportation Secretary said, "This new rule will ensure that healthcare professionals conducting exams keep in mind all of the demands required to operate large trucks and passenger buses safely."

National database created

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, or FMCSA, will create a national database in which all medical examiner certified to examine commercial drivers can be found. This will make it easier for commercial drivers to find a certified medical examiner in their area and get their examination done correctly. The FMCSA posted the training requirements for review by the public, commercial drivers and medical professionals and accepted comments. Medical examiners have some time to get the required training done; they are not required to be on the database until May 21, 2014.

Protecting the safety of all people

The FMCSA Administrator pointed out how the new rule will enhance safety for everyone on the roads. The FMCSA Administrator said, "Truck and bus drivers deserve highly-trained medical examiners that think safety first. By holding medical examiners accountable to high standards of practice, we raise the bar for safety and save lives through increased commercial driver and vehicle safety."

Unfortunately, no matter what happens, there will still be crashes. Some crashes are minor, but not everyone is so lucky. Many crashes with commercial vehicles cause serious personal injuries and even deaths. People who are injured in these crashes may have a legal remedy to hold those at fault responsible and get the recovery they deserve. A personal injury attorney can help injured people determine their rights and find peace.

A person injured due to the negligence of a commercial driver may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wage benefits and even pain and suffering awards. The individual driver and even the commercial trucking company may be liable for the damages. An experienced attorney can help an injured motorist file the claim for compensation.