Driver fitness is a critical underwriting factor that influences insurance rates. Driver fitness factors include items such as ensuring drivers have the appropriate licenses for the type of vehicle being driven and making sure drivers always carry up-to-date medical cards. The top 10 most common driver fitness violations are listed below:

  • No medical card in the driver’s possession
  • Non-English-speaking driver
  • Expired medical examiner’s certificate
  • Driving without a CDL
  • Driver lacking valid license for the type of vehicle being driven
  • Driving a CMV while disqualified
  • Driver lacking physical qualification(s)
  • Unqualified driver
  • Driving a CMV (CDL) while disqualified
  • Driver disqualified from operating a CMV

To avoid driver fitness issues, follow these best practices:

  • Carry your documentation. Whenever you drive a CMV, you need to carry your medical card and driver’s license to prove that you’re qualified.
  • Watch those expiration dates! Your license, medical certificate, and hazmat endorsement are no longer valid after their expiration dates — there is no grace period! Don’t rely on someone else to remind you of an expiration date. Track the dates yourself so you never miss a deadline.
  • Meet the standards. Take charge of your qualifications and make sure you’re always qualified to be behind the wheel.
  • Stay fit. Stay in good enough physical condition to pass the DOT medical exam, now and in the future. Take advantage of any wellness programs that are offered.
  • Is your license valid? If you’re convicted of an offense, make sure it’s not on the list of disqualifying offenses in §391.15 (for all CMV drivers) or §383.51 (for CDL drivers). If you’ve been disqualified, stay off the road!
  • Are you trained? Entry-level driver training is required for all interstate CDL drivers who have less than one year of experience. In addition, hazmat training is required for employees who affect hazardous materials transportation.
  • Carry the right license. Make sure your license is valid for every type of vehicle you operate. For example, if you have a Class B license but you need to operate a tractor-trailer, you’ll need to get a Class A license first. Or if you normally operate a motor coach.”

If you’d like to connect with one of our trucking insurance advisors to learn more about driver fitness and how implementing these best practices can help you reduce your trucking insurance costs, contact Tara O'Banion today!