As a school bus driver, you are in charge of a critical part of a student’s day: transporting them safely to and from school in the morning and afternoon. Part of your job requirements may include undergoing periodic physicals to maintain your health certification. While a DOT physical can be valid for up to two years, your school district may require them more frequently based on their requirements.
What is a DOT Physical?
DOT physicals are a critical part of maintaining your Commercial Driving License (CDL), making sure that you are physically fit to operate a commercial-grade vehicle by Department of Transportation standards. Your district can require you to renew your physical as little as biannually and as frequently as monthly based on any risk factors detected. During your physical, your doctor will need to see:
- A copy of your medical history
- A list of over-the-counter and prescription medications you are taking that could appear on a drug test
- Corrective lenses or hearing aids you may have to correct your vision and hearing
In addition to taking your height, weight and blood pressure, your doctor will perform several tests to check the functionality of your vital organs and system functions. Your vision and hearing will be tested, and your vision will need to be at least 20/40 in order to pass. Corrective lenses will be allowed. You will also need to be able to hear a whisper from at least five feet away, with or without the use of hearing aids. Your blood pressure cannot be higher that 140/90 with or without the use of prescription medications to control it. If you suffer from a chronic condition, you will need to be able to show that you can control it using medications to prevent negative reactions or episodes.
Why bus drivers require DOT physicals
Because school bus drivers spend a lot of time driving oversized vehicles, their ability to concentrate and navigate without causing an accident or harm to others on the road. School buses require the driver to move through narrow residential areas with students shouting and moving behind them, which can lead to higher levels of stress. Stress can lead to a spike in blood pressure, which can lead to medical issues including memory and vision loss, dementia, stroke and heart attacks. If you begin to experience symptoms of a stroke or a heart attack, as well as immediate vision loss, visit your local emergency room immediately. By undergoing routine physicals, your doctor will be able to keep an eye on potential issues and provide treatment before it intensifies.
DOT Physicals for Bus Drivers in West Orange, NJ
If you are in need of a DOT Physical, visit AFC Urgent Care West Orange today! Please call us with any questions at 973-669-5900.