CDL Health Screening: What To Expect

As a commercial truck driver, you could literally haul tens of thousands of pounds at any given time. The role of the Department of Transportation is to ensure that both you and other motorists are safe, as a result. Consequently, all commercial truck drivers are required to pass a health screening in order to obtain their license. If you plan to apply for your commercial driving license in the near future, it's vital you know what to expect from the screening process. 

Blood Pressure

Your blood pressure should fall within a safe range when it is checked. Depending on the initial reading, the examiner may recheck your blood pressure reading later during the exam to see if it has gone down now that you're settled. If your reading is still high, you must show that you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure and are on a medically prescribed plan to control the condition. 

Cardiac History

The examiner will ask you specific questions about your cardiac health history. If you have suffered any type of congestive heart failure or another cardiac insufficiency, you can obtain your CDL, but you will face more stringent requirements. For example, professional drivers with a history of heart concerns often have to undergo testing on a more frequent basis, such as submitting to a stress test every year. Failure to comply with the requirements may result in a revocation of their license. 


The vision screening part of the CDL health screening is one of the most critical steps. In short, if you are not able to see sufficiently and you don't have a corrective measure in place, such as glasses or contact lenses, you will not receive your license. The Department of Transportation will not put a driver on the road that cannot see. If you wear glasses or contacts, ensure you bring them along on your test day. 


Driving is more than a visual task. To drive safely, you also need to be able to hear sufficiently. As a result, a part of the health screening will include a hearing exam. Perfect hearing is not mandatory. However, the examiner will need to verify that you can hear well enough to hear any hazards you face on the road, such as an ambulance or fire truck.

The goal of the Department of Transportation is not to be invasive. The organization is instead trying to preserve everyone's safety. Make sure you review the health screening requirements for a CDL to ensure you're prepared.