Can a person be passed if he/she is primarily spanish speaking-can converse in engish– but can not write and read english well?Apparently they’ve been passed in the past.

This is often a frustrating issue for medical examiners.  According to FMCSA regulations, it is the motor carriers’ responsibility to make sure their commercial drivers:

(2) Can read and speak the English language sufficiently to converse with the general public, to understand highway traffic signs and signals in the English language, to respond to official inquiries, and to make entries on reports and records;

Note that this is the motor carriers’ responsibility.  It is not the medical examiners’ responsibility.  Ours is to evaluate the driver for any physical or mental  conditions which would preclude safe operation of a commercial vehicle.  So in practicality, if I can get the information I need to conduct the history and physical, including a medical history I am comfortable with, I will complete the exam and render my certification decision.  I will also make any appropriate comments in the comments section regarding any difficulty with communication, and make the motor carrier aware of potential language barriers.  Then, it is up to them.


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