Required DOT Rules and Regulations

The DOT rules and regulations are meant to be followed by all truckers and other drivers on US roads. Each state has its own variation of these regulations, but some of the rules are enforced on a federal level.

When training or recruiting drivers, it is important to remember these rules in order to prevent hefty fines and other complications. The Department of Transport periodically updates their rules, so it is helpful to have a specialized program or database that provides notifications every time the rules have been changed. All pertinent information on DOT rules and regulations can also be found at

Driver Qualifications

Before becoming a truck driver, an applicant must qualify by meeting the requirements provided by his/her state. All individuals need to follow the requirements of their state, even if these regulations are stricter than the federal rules.

All drivers should have a state-issued driver’s license and a clean driving record. In many cases, private trucking companies have their own requirements that are much stricter than State or federal laws.

Drivers who will transport large trucks that are over 26,000 pounds will need to obtain a CDL (commercial driver’s license) from the area where they are living. A CDL is also required for all truckers who transport hazardous materials, regardless of the size of their truck.

In most states, normal driving credentials are enough for vans and light trucks. Federal requirements specify that drivers should be over the age of 21 and undergo a physical exam every two years.

The driver should have a 70-degree vision field, 20/40 vision or proper lenses, and good hearing. A CDL trucker cannot be colorblind. If an individual is convicted in a felony involving alcohol, drugs, or a motor vehicle, he will not be permitted to apply for CDL. All licensees should be able to speak/read English well enough to communicate with police officers, prepare reports, and read road signs. In addition, they must take a written exam provided by the US Department of Transportation.

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