Vision

vision med

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Q&A

What are the vision requirements to get a DOT medical card?

What if I have monocular vision?

Can I wear contact lenses to do the vision test?

What if I have had laser eye surgery?

I am legally blind in one eye from an injury? With documentation from my eye specialist can I pass the DOT physical?

I have 20/20 vision corrected, right eye. 20/200 uncorrectable in my left eye, 70 degree plus horizontal left and right. Does this fail the DOT physical?

I’ve been a CDL driver for 16 years. Last week, for my DOT physical the doctor made me do the color test from a book with numbers and dots. I could get only half of them right. I have always been able to see the colors red, green and amber and pass my DOT physical. Now the book test has made me fail the color portion of the DOT physical. What’s going on with this?

What are the vision requirements to get a DOT medical card?

You must have a distant visual acuity of at least 20/40 with or without corrective lenses:

  • see at least 20/40 with both eyes together
  • see at least 20/40 with the right eye
  • see at least 20/40 with the left eye.

Monovision is a disqualification. Use of a contact lens in one eye for distant visual acuity and another lens in the other eye for near vision is not acceptable, nor are telescopic lenses acceptable for driving a commercial motor vehicle.

Exemption: A driver with monocular vision may be able to get a Federal Vision Exemption Certificate, if medically fit for duty in all other categories of the physical exam.

What if I have monocular vision?

If you pass all other aspects of the DOT physical, and you meet all vision requirements in the functioning eye, then you may be considered for a Federal Vision Exemption.

Can I wear contact lenses to do the vision test?

You are permitted to wear contact lenses provided you’re used to wearing them and have a good tolerance for wearing contacts. Be aware that monovision is a disqualification, so use of a contact lens in one eye for distant visual acuity and another lens in the other eye for near vision is not acceptable.

What if I have had laser eye surgery?

Provided you meet the vision requirements, you should have no problem.

I am legally blind in one eye from an injury? With documentation from my eye specialist can I pass the DOT physical?

This type of injury will require documentation.
If you are going to drive only within your state borders, it will be easier. Just check with your DMV to see what the states rules and regulations are.
To pursue an interstate medical card will require an exemption that you can only get from FMCSA. Check out the requirements to determine if this is something you want to pursue. It is possible, but a bit tough to do. Lots of hoops, but do-able.

I have 20/20 vision corrected, right eye. 20/200 uncorrectable in my left eye, 70 degree plus horizontal left and right. Does this fail the DOT physical?

DOT requires you have a minimum of 20/40 vision in each eye, and in both eyes together, either non-corrective or with corrective lenses. Your peripheral vision is within normal limits.
All that being said, you could be driving skills tested with a FMCSA exemption. Check with the FMCSA for the requirements for that particular exemption.

I’ve been a CDL driver for 16 years. Last week, for my DOT physical the doctor made me do the color test from a book with numbers and dots. I could get only half of them right. I have always been able to see the colors red, green and amber and pass my DOT physical. Now the book test has made me fail the color portion of the DOT physical. What’s going on with this?

It looks like the doctor is trying to determine if you may be color blind. But the primary reason for the DOT physical color test is to determine your ability to distinguish red, amber/yellow and green – not a color blindness examination. Not really sure as to why they would do this. Especially since you have been driving for so long. You are correct to question this.

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Comments

  1. Beverly says

    I see nothing for Washington D.C. where i live i’ve been driving trucks and busses since 1975 . I’ve had eye surgery in the left eye. The eye is still healing in the meantime i had to renew my DOT physical i passed everything except the left eye test. I had to surrender my class A for a regular so i could drive my car. But now they gave me 60 calendar days to get my vision to 20/40 my last exam in January was 20/50. What can i do. My city job has threatened to fire me.

    • says

      @Beverly
      Just get your eyes examined before you go to retake the DOT examination. If your eyes are not ready to return to work, then have the eye examiner write a brief note regarding your condition and expected healing time for you, and take it to the DOT examiner and to your employer.
      You can’t speed up mother nature’s healing time, but the notation should be a big help.

  2. Kym McGarry says

    I am an admissions and placement rep for a CDL school. One of my students is unable to pass the vision test in his right eye. He has passed his driver’s license test and has no other medical issues. I know we can file a vision waiver, but the wording in the waiver precludes him because he’s not driven a CMV the past 3 years. How do I get someone who has never had a CDL a waiver so he can GET his CDL?

  3. JC says

    The same doctor that failed my hearing test also failed my eye test. I went to an eye doctor later that day, and tested 20/20 in one eye and 20/30 in the other eye. Do I need a better doctor? This guy was also a chiropractor. Amazing.

  4. Alan Weiland says

    I have only 20/50 in my right eye, corrected, due to corneal scarring from a viral infection. My left is 20/15 corrected. Together I can achieve the 20/40 no problem. I find I was misinformed that all that mattered was the two eyes together. I already have a WIA grant for CDL school and am supposed to start in March. Right now I feel devastated. Can anyone offer me advice or a glimmer of hope? I wanted to drive interstate and am a Chicago, Illinois resident.

    • says

      @Alan
      Somebody has mis-informed you about the vision portion of the test.
      Class A-interstate driver must have 20/40 or better, either corrected or not, in each eye individually and together.
      You may want to check into driving intra-state, as the state laws may allow for the visual difference. Or you could check into a vision waiver through the FMCSA.

  5. Lauri D says

    My husband had a brain tumor that was removed on 01/27/2015. It was in a part of his brain that affects the vision. The only part of his vision that is affected is his left side peripheral vision.
    Today we went for an eye exam & the eye doctor said that he has 70 degree peripheral in his left eye, and normal range in his right eye.
    My 2 questions 1) what is normal range (what degree is normal?), as I was also told that I have normal range in both eyes, and what is the degree for him to pass a DOT physical?
    Lauri

  6. David r mundy jr says

    I worked for the Madison county highway for 16 years had time invested in my retirement and was let go only after passing all written test went in front of a judge in Indianapolis at the Ameriplex center OFF 70 WEST was never told I could get a federal waiver the judge told me there was no way possibale for me to get my c.d.l license do to the fact im blind in one eye………so now I come to find out that’s not true hows come I was lied to I went thru pure hell with my ex employer and I have called back down to indy every year and was always told the same thing WHY??????

  7. Carol Sansone says

    Hi, I’m asking this question for my husband. His certification expires 1/31/15, he fell on the ice and his glasses broke, he has no spare set. Our optician won’t be able to get his new glasses till sometime in February. He’s going for his physical 1/30/15, the facility advised if he fails his vision, the doctor will not even see him, he has to turn in his cdl license which expires 6/18. When I questioned this, then they changed the story and said if he comes back in February with new glasses they can date the certificate in February, not 1/31/15 when it expires. Could you please clarify? Also, he is not working currently. Thanks so much!

    • says

      @carol
      Unless you are in a state like California, there should not be a major issue. Just go get the glasses first and then go for the DOT examination. The medical card is tied to the CDL so the driver can drive, but it is not tied in such a way as to have to give the CDL up and start all over. By FMCSA regulations he must be able to pass the medical examination to carry a medical certificate. And if he can’t pass the vision test, then he should not be driving now anyhow.

  8. frank says

    I’ve had my class A CDL for 9 years now, I have a blind spot in left eye from injury when I was a kid 20+ years ago, I’ve essentially passed the exam by cheating but my job states no CDL your fired, I need to come clean with my doctor as I don’t want to jeopardize his career not to mention my hands are crippling with dupuytrens contracture, should I just accept the fact it’s over with my CDL or do you know of any option I can take?

    • says

      @frank
      You may have another option, which would be to do a slight downgrade in your drivers class and work intra-state only. The rules and regulations may be a bit more relaxed for your state. Check with your state DLD and see what it would take to downgrade and drive locally. Good Luck

  9. Angel says

    Hi i’m 24 years old and I went to a cvs minute clinic to take my dot physical in Florida. I passed everything on the physical except the vision portion. The examiner temporarily disqualified me due to my vision which needs to be corrected with glasses. The doctor also mentioned that I need to see a specialist and than retest. Does this mean that the dot now has the information that I took the test and failed the vision portion? Can I just go to another testing site?will my first tested attempt be recorded in their system?

    • says

      @Angel
      All you really need to do is get your glasses or corrective lenses and go back to the original examiner and have them confirm that you made the necessary corrections and you’ll be good to go.
      And, yes, your information was entered into the FMCSA data base. That portion is really immaterial. Once you have shown that you got corrected lenses, the examiner will go back into the FMCSA data base and update the original information input.

    • Jerry says

      FMCSA has a website that tracks drivers DOT results, and prevents drivers from “Doctor Shopping” so yes, you have been marked as failed.

  10. Steve says

    I am a resident of the state of Florida. I had a cataract removed from my left eye this past August 2014. I now have 20/30 vision in that eye, and it is correctable to 20/20. I have corrected 20/20 vision in my right eye. When I went to get a DOT physical 2 days ago, I was told by the medical examiner about a new law that went into effect this past May. According to him, It requires that every time I have a DOT physical, I now have to have an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist do a complete eye exam before I can be given a DOT Medical card. He also told me I am allowed only 1 year on the card, due to having had cataract surgery. I have had 2 other DOT physicals in the .last 4 months, (since the surgery). At those 2 times my vision was well within the DOT requirements as it still is as well. Both those times the full 2 years were allowed before a new DOT Physical was to be required. Is what this doctor told me in the last 2 days accurate, or is he misinterpreting the law?
    Thank you for your attention,
    Steve

    • says

      @Steve
      It’s called CYA on the doctors side. He may be being very cautious about doing a DOT examination so close to your surgery, but the reality is, if you correct to better then 20/40 in each eye then there is no reason to restrict your medical card and there is no law stating such.

      • Steve says

        I have further questions regarding my previous question.

        1. You said it was CYA in this doctors case. This Doctor told me there was a new law requiring me to get a complete eye exam EVERYTIME I get another DOT physical. I am curious is it true there is a new law requiring that, or is it just him exercising “CYA.?
        2. I have had 3 DOT physicals in the last 4 months. My DOT physicals I had in September and November this year says it is good for 2 years, does this latest one done in December over ride that?
        Thank you for your time, Steve

        • says

          @Steve
          1. No new law, just CYA
          Why would you have had three DOT examinations in the past few months? That in and of itself raises questions. FMCSA should be asking questions regarding the need for so many examinations and CME’s putting examination findings on the FMCSA data-base.
          But to answer your question.
          2. It would be reasonable that your earlier examinations would override your last physical you had, unless there was reasoning for the last physical to have you re-instated as a driver due to some health related issue that removed you from behind the wheel. Each time a driver has a situation that removes him from behind the wheel, then he must have a new medical examination to determine his medical fitness for duty. But that being said, you are not required to have a complete eye examination each time you have a new DOT examination, just confirmation that you are correctable to 20/40 or better in each eye and both eyes together.

          • Steve says

            The reason for the multiple exams are as follows: I renewed my CDL in July as it was coming due to expire. At that time the state of FL determined I could not drive interstate and limited me to intrastate only. I quickly got cataract surgery and remedied the problem. At the time I was between jobs and my current DOT physical was about to expire, so I had to go get a new DOT physical card. Once the Ophthalmologist gave me the OK to be gone away long enough to run over the road I got an OTR job which required I get a new DOT physical. That job went to hell in a hand basket right off and I resigned. Then I landed a new job and their requirement also was a fresh DOT physical. A lot of trucking companies do that, I do not know why but they want you to go to their Doctor and get a physical. I found it odd the last Doctor limited me to one year after he was the one telling me I had to have another exam by an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist before he would approve me. I went back to my Optometrist and he examined me and filled out the paperwork saying I was good for 2 years and then The DOT physical Doctor ignored that and limited me to 1 year. That made it seem like the Optometrist visit was not needed, I mean he either respects the optometrist’s evaluation or he doesn’t.

          • says

            @Steve
            Personally I would be asking questions regarding the CME’s thought process.
            He has the right to do what he has done, but why? What other issues is he taking into consideration? There is no regulation regarding this issue, so why the limitation of a one year card, other then to make sure he is keeping an eye on you for some reason, and will that change on your next DOT examination?

  11. Mark Walker says

    I just took a DOT Physical last Friday(5th of Dec. 2014). I passed everything but discovered I was partially color blind. I can see the whole color spectrum, but my question is, If I can see all colors, but am red/green minor challenged when trying to see numbers in the charts at the test facilities, is there anything I can do or should I just go look for another job?

    • says

      @Mark
      Color blindness is not an issue with the FMCSA, as long as you can distinguish red, green and amber for traffic signals.
      There is no additional distinctive testing needed for a color blind driver, unless it creates a problem for you.

  12. richie says

    I have a NY CDL license.I have been driving a truck for 35 Years. I am blind in one eye i can see shapes but can not read and it is not correctable I am also color blind does this disqualify me from the new terms of passing for the medical card. I have been told its a automatic disqualification and so say no

    • says

      @Richie
      There are no new rulings regarding vision.
      If you have been driving for 35 years and you have been blind all during that time, then keep doing what you are doing.
      Federal interstate driving has always required a vision waiver to drive interstate.
      For intra-state, each state is different, but to the best of my knowledge most states made NO new changes to how they would qualify you.

  13. tim says

    I am legally blind in my right eye, have been since birth. It is not correctable even with surgery. Can I get a waiver to drive interstate?

  14. Johnie A Riddick says

    My left is 20/20 my right eye is 20/60 I applied for a job with Fed Ex for job was disqualified for vision the vehice was a cargo van. The Doctor said that both eyes had to be 20/40 atleast

  15. Cody W says

    I am blind in my left eye and have been since birth but have good vision in my left eye. Will this disqualify me? I am obtaining my DOT medical card for my Class E endorsement in the state of MO. If this does disqualify me what do i have to do to be able to work around this?

    • says

      @Cody
      The CME should inform you of the visual waiver which will be needed for your situation. See MO DOT Medical Program.
      Traveling intra-state is less demanding than traveling interstate which has stricter rulings and regulations.
      So it all depends on what type of driving you will be doing, to determine your needs.

  16. JJ says

    Thanks for the reply.

    Where do I submit the physical documentation to get my medical card? I will need the waiver and have the appointment with my opthamalogist next week.

    I’m sorry about being clueless, but I’m on my own here and this process is unclear to me.

    Thanks.

    • says

      @JJ
      1. See your opthamologist. Get a report from the opthamologist.
      2. Go to a certified medical examiner for a DOT physical exam. Take the opthamology report with you, it’ll be helpful information for the medical examiner. If you qualify for a medical card other than the monocular vision, you may get a medical card with the condition that a vision waiver is needed.
      3. Start the vision waiver process.
      4. Start driver training if the school will allow, while the vision waiver is in process.

  17. Natasha says

    If I do fail the eye test portion due to a cataract– what happens? Do they allow me to drive in the meantime until I get the cataract removed? Its borderline right now and my regular eye doctor says we can just monitor it for now, which I’d prefer to do– but I’m concerned about the test in a couple months.

    • says

      @Natasha
      Visual acuity must be 20/40 or better in both eyes and each eye individually. That includes using corrective lenses. If you do not pass the eye test due to a cataract, then you don’t get to drive until it’s corrected.

  18. Greg V says

    Getting different information. A company I was hired with, wants me to get a DOT physical for intrastate driving, no CDL required. The physician says I will need a federal waiver for vision, but the federal vision phone number representative said cause it is intrastate driving onnly they will not do a waiver for intrastate driving, and I need to go thru my state for an exemption. The local DMV has a form I can get filled out from an eye doctor, but the physician completing the physical said the only way to pass the DOT physical is to have the waiver from the FMCSA, and that it doesn’t matter if it is intrastate or interstate driving the requirements for the physical are the same. How do you handle that when the FMCSA won’t do waivers for intrastate driving and the doctor will not take a state DMV approved waiver?

    • says

      @Greg
      Your local doctor is over-reading the DOT examination. Your medical card to drive is only to determine medical fitness for the job. As an intra-state driver all you need is the vision waiver from the state to drive intra-state.

  19. JJ says

    I do not have a cdl but want to obtain one. I have monocular vision and know I will need a waiver. My question is about process. Do I go through the training and take the exams first or do I get the medical waiver and then go through training. I’m getting mixed answers from my DMV and my school. Thanks.

    • says

      @JJ
      Most states require that you have a medical card before starting your training.
      The visual waiver will take a bit of time to acquire and some steps must be gone through first. The medical card will state that a waiver is required.
      Medical card first, then start process for waiver and training.

  20. douglas says

    I have been seeing all kinds of vision questions but none pertain to me. How about an answer about glaucoma. Mine is treated and pressures are well within requirements. 12 in both eyes. Now I have seen two different Dot examiners and both won’t sign off on my dot physical even though I see 20/20 in one eye and 20/15 in the other. My horizontal field of vision is within specification. They both want my eye specialist to tell them I can see well enough to drive. Now my eye specialist says that he won’t sign off that I can drive. He says that if I get into an accident then it could come back on him. I have read the regulation and I see nothing pertaining to my problem, so what am I to do? I can’t keep spending $100 every 3 months to renew my dot physical card. It isn’t fair.

    • says

      @ Douglas
      So FMCSA wants any driver to pass the vision test with at least 70 degrees of peripheral vision in each eye. Corrected and / or uncorrected eyes must see 20/40 or better using 1. both eyes and 2. each eye individually.
      Your eye doctor is not being ask to do anything but to confirm your present visual acuity. If you have a visual / eye condition which requires medication, then you need to have your prescribing doctor complete a medical release form explaining what meds and if any restrictions exist.
      The CME’s job is to determine medical fitness for duty as a CMV operator. The CME needs the medical release form from your prescribing doctor to determine your medical fitness and the eye doctor is only answering the most basic question, is your condition stable, safe and effective? He is not being held at any level of risk.

  21. william stroup says

    Hoe would you arrange to be skills tested by FMCSA if you have a vision problem in one eye less than 20/40

  22. Corey Beets says

    If my Texas intrastate vision waiver is approved and I get the required experience driving a commercial vehicle to apply for the FMSCA vision exemption if it is granted does that overthrow the intrastate Texas restriction and allow me to driver interstate?

    • says

      @Corey
      In most cases FMCSA regulations override state regulations.
      To pass the class A, drivers medical examination is more strict than most states.
      Once you have the DOT vision exemption, you should be good to go. Good Luck

  23. Corey beets says

    Was told I will probably have to get a vision waiver for my Amblyopia. But also have seen exemptions for amblyopia to be able to drive interstate? How long does it normally take to get the waiver to drive intrastate? Do I need experience doing intrastate before I can try for exemption for interstate? I’m trying to start trucking school around October.

    • says

      @Corey
      Most states are a bit more lenient with intra-state drivers. So check with your state regarding that issue.
      Inter-state is under federal ruling and is more strict. You would have to have a vision waiver, which could take some time to acquire. So it all depends on what type of driving and whether it’s intra or inter-state.

  24. ron says

    I had a eye injury a few months back my eye has healed but i lost my peripheral it is only at 50 percent and at night the headlights of on coming cars cause migranes also my vision gets blurry after a couple of hours of driving in that eye. Will i be able to get a waiver for this thanks

  25. Tim says

    I have 20/20 in both eyes but I tend to see double if I move my eyes or head around scanning mirrors and such. There is lots of Floaters in my right eye that does poss a problem from time to time. I can focus back to one image but it’s not stable….will this disqualify me as a class A CDL driver…this has got lots worse since removal of a cataract in my right eye? I need an opinion because I feel it’s time to throw in the towel, I don’t trust what I am seeing, depth preception is crap too.

    • says

      @Tim
      Your gut feeling is the best one to go with on this one. You are not going to be a truly safe operator and you will be questioning every move you make. Also your examiner will probably not qualify you as a safe CMV operator. In this case it’s all about safety and you have made the best decision in this matter. Good Luck.

    • Mike French Jr. says

      With regards to the floaters and depth perception after cataract removal…… your opthamologist should be able to remove many of the floaters. As for depth perception, he/she should be able to correct that also. If doc (surgeon) isn’t able or willing to correct the floaters etc, get a 2nd opinion from a different opthamologist. I had cataract surgery, and had some floaters that were removed.

  26. Joanne Moore says

    You keep saying over and over and over and over to check into getting a Federal Vision Exemption if you don’t have 20/40 in both eyes but a monocular vision with one eye that passes but the other that doesn’t. HOW? Who do I contact? What address or website? It is one thing to say contact someone but something else if you don’t tell us how to? I live in Illinois in Will County. Where do I go, who do I write, what do I do?

  27. Joanne Moore says

    DOT requires you have a minimum of 20/40 vision in each eye, and in both eyes together, either non-corrective or with corrective lenses. Your peripheral vision is within normal limits.
    All that being said, you could be driving skills tested with a FMCSA exemption. Check with the FMCSA for the requirements for that particular exemption.

  28. Anthony Huss says

    I have a qustion about a hernia. I have a hernia on my right groin area. At times it bulges out other times it doesn’t I have had this for a long time and does not hurt or bother me in any way, can this keep me from passing my dot physical. Thanks in advance!

  29. Sandy says

    I recently took my physical for dot and passed everything. However because I were monovision contacts I have to apply for a waiver. If I have 20/40 in each eye and in both together why is this an issue and why is having monovision contacts an issue in the first place.

    • says

      @Sandy
      You brought this upon yourself. Monocular visual setups are disqualifiers for interstate drivers, according to FMCSA.
      Just go in with a set of lens that allow you to pass without the monocular vision setup and you’ll pass without any problems.

      • Sandy says

        thanks wish I had known this information before. Did not know about monovision contacts. I will attempt to take the test again with new contacts but not sure that it will make a difference with this doctor. Also please explain why monovision contacts are an issue

        • says

          @Sandy
          The monovision disqualifier is an FMCSA regulation.
          See the FAQ at the top of this page.
          It’s important to understand, and it seems that people who have monocular lasik will have problems.
          Hopefully yours is just a matter of changing lenses or getting prescription glasses. Good luck.

  30. Jeff says

    Hi, I live in Alabama and I am legally blind in my left eye from an uncorrectable injury as an infant, 20/200 vision and 20/20 in my right eye. I was able to get my regular drivers license years ago with no problem, then I took a DOT physical a little while back and did not pass it because of my vision. I do not want to be a truck driver, but rather a selector in a winn-dixie warehouse. A selector there operates an electric pallet jack that carries 4500 pounds or more , which OSHA ruled recently that the selectors must have a CDL license to operate those machines. Since I would not be performing as an “over-the-road” truck driver, would a medical clearance stating that I can perform those without accomidation enable me to pass the DOT physical and get my CDL license? Please respond as soon as possible. Preferrably by email if possible. Thank you. On second thought, responding on this site is fine.

    • says

      @Jeff
      Check with Alabama DLD. You should be able to pass as an intra-state only, non commercial operator.
      That would get your medical card, with your restrictions listed. Then the state DLD will provide you with a vision exemption, if needed. Good Luck.

  31. Chris says

    Ok… Two part question. Do I need to get federal exemption for vision before my medical card runs out and assuming I got the federal exemption how long would it last?

    • says

      @Chris
      Not knowing what the eye condition is, I can’t really answer your question.
      In general, most of the exemptions are for two years and the medical card for one, depending on the condition.

  32. Zack says

    I have monocular vision in one eye. My other eye is 20/20. I went to the optometrist and medical examiner and the medical examiner said I would need to get a federal vision exemption. I went to the DMV in California and told them I wanted a intrastate commercial license only. DMV denied my application and said it was because of the MD monocular vision report and I should look into getting an exemption from the Federal. My question is will I be approved for an exemption or have anyone heard of other drivers receiving a federal vision exemption for monocular vision?
    Sincerely

    • says

      @Zack
      Once you have the waiver from the federal government you should not have any real problems. You will have to have a skills test done once you have the waiver and are ready to start driving.

  33. Ethan says

    I was diagnosed with a kidney disease in 2012. A side effect of the disease was high blood pressure. Before we caught it, it had damaged the nerves in my right eye and I lost 40% vision in my right eye. I cannot correct this with glasses or contacts. Can I pass a DOT vision test with my vision issues?

    • says

      @Ethan
      You don’t give me enough information as to what your present eye sight is, but even if you are blind in one eye you could still drive. It would require a vision waiver from the FMCSA/DOT.
      Or you might check with your state about driving as an intra-state driver. Each state has its own rules and regs on this issue.

  34. Daniel T says

    I wear bi-focal contact lenses . My vision is 20/40. I cannot read a WALL chart at 20 ft as required. My eye Dr. says my employers testing facility has to use the eye machine. Is this true?
    BTW: I pass using the eye machine ;)

    • says

      @Daniel
      By FMCSA rules, you should be able to read a wall chart at 20 feet and have vision of 20/40 or better with both eyes and each eye individually. And that can be with a corrective lens.
      I would make sure the vision portion of the DOT examination is completed by your eye doctor. That covers everybody’s bases.

  35. Dan Flint says

    Can I have an in state medical card in the state of Tn? and what is the eye exam requirments for this?

    • says

      @Dan
      Hard to say. If they follow FMCSA it is 20/40 in both eyes and 20/40 in each eye. That can be done with corrective lenses or without correction.
      Here in Utah you could have special limitations as long as you are driving intra-state only.
      So check with your state DMV to answer your specific questions.

  36. Dan Flint says

    I can not pass the federal eye exam requirments. My question is can I get an instate only medical card for the state of Tn?

  37. Mary Johnston says

    Can you file an application for vision exemption in Arkansas if you hold a CDL with a passenger (city transit driver) endorsement?

  38. kim says

    CAN A DRIVER WHO HAS MONOCULAR VISION BE CERTIFIED FOR INTRASTATE (NEVADA) WITHOUT THE VISION EXEMPTION WAIVER AND FOR 1 OR 2 YEARS CERT.

    THANK YOU,

    • says

      @Kim
      Not sure about intra-state within NV.
      I do know that in Utah a monocular vision driver can operate a commercial vehicle, without a waiver, as long as it is intra-state only.
      Check with your state DMV for specifics.

  39. PLP says

    I have diabetes which is controlled by oral medicine. Do I have to have an exam/paperwork from an ophthalmologist to give the DOT medical examiner to obtain my medical card now? Or is a regular optician exam sufficient?

    • says

      @PLP
      If you are having any difficulty with your vision, then get your ophthalmologist to fill out the visual portion of the DOT medical exam.
      You should not need a waiver or exemption for this. In most cases, if you are not having any problems, you can have the DOT examiner do the eye test and have to difficulties.

  40. Amber Foreman says

    My husband passed his DOT with flying colors 3yrs ago. Since then, we’ve found out he has diabetes type2. Due to his medication he has developed a color defiency and failed 4 out of the 8 color/vision questions. Will they allow him to wear prescribed tinted lenses (which have allowed him to see all colors thru them) to pass the exam?

    • says

      @Amber
      What DOT is looking for is the ability to distinguish between red, yellow, and green. There’s no other color test that is a part of the medical exam.
      So the use of a prescribed lens should be just fine.

  41. Dave says

    I passed all the medical tests and recieved my DOT card without any issues. When I went to the TX licensing to take my tests I failed the eye test there. They have given me a waiver to apply for — so will I lose my DOT. I have 20/40 in both and 20/40 in right and 20/100 in left since childhood. Am I still going to be able to get my CDL? Is there a way to get around this since I have already got my medical card?

    • says

      @Dave
      You should not have been given a medical card without having the examiners explanation as to what it means to you.
      So here is where you are. You passed the exam and you can now apply for the visual waiver from FMCSA.
      But your medical card is only good with the exemption waiver in hand. And there’s no way around it.
      It is doable, just takes a little time. Good luck.

  42. Janita says

    Where can you find an eye doctor that does the vision waivers in Arkansas or Oklahoma ? All the ones my ex has called doesn’t know what he is talking about and won’t do one.

    • says

      @Janita
      You must first request the basic information from FMCSA. No one has this form on hand. So, check with FMCSA and then follow the instructions. Good Luck. It will take a little time, but is very do-able.

  43. Hank Highsmith says

    Maybe this answers my question?

    I have 20/20 vision corrected, right eye. 20/200 uncorrectable in my left eye, 70 degree plus horizontal left and right. Does this fail the DOT physical?

    DOT requires you have a minimum of 20/40 vision in each eye, and in both eyes together, either non-corrective or with corrective lenses. Your peripheral vision is within normal limits.
    All that being said, you could be driving skills tested with a FMCSA exemption. Check with the FMCSA for the requirements for that particular exemption.

  44. Hank Highsmith says

    I have to take the DOT Physical to get a taxi license. I was born with Amblyopia in my left eye. It is all I have ever known and next week I will have had my operators license for 44 years. The only requirement is that I have outside mirrors, both sides. I am going to get glasses this week before the physical. Someone that I talked to at the taxi company said she thought they weren’t as picky on vision for taxi drivers. Any opinion or avice?

    • says

      @Hank
      FMCSA and DOT require that a driver have a minimum of 20/40 vision in each eye as well as 20/40 with the use of both eyes. That can be with out correction or with correction. Also the driver needs to have at least a 70 degree lateral vision.
      These rules are for the Medical card for a class A driver.
      I would check with your state to see if you will qualify as a taxi driver with a limited lateral vision. You are not driving an 80 ft. long truck and each state has a slightly different requirement for non over the road driver, based on their driver class.

  45. cory schindler says

    Last week I took my dot physical I passed everything but the vision I’m getting glasses in 7 days do I have to retake the whole physical again or just the eye test.

  46. Dennis R Otto says

    Yesterday Jan. 14th 2014 I took the written test to get my cdl learners permit at the Pewaukee Wis. DMV. I passed the first test with a score of 82 and the second test with a score of 100. When I took my vision test the examiner that administered the test told me that my vision was 20/40 in my left eye with my glasses on, and that 20/20 was required to get a cdl learners permit. This seems to contridict the information that I am seeing on this website.

    • says

      @Dennis
      On the visual acuity examination you must be 20/40 in each eye and both eyes together. That can be done with or without corrective lenses, but 20/40 with corrective lenses is within the normal DOT/ FMCSA parameters.
      Whomever told you, you must correct to 20/20, is incorrect.
      Here is the official link to the rule/regulation from FMCSA – See 391.41 (b)(10).

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