Ontario carriers with a CVOR have started to receive letters from the Ministry of Transportation (MTO) regarding a new requirement for class G drivers of commercial motor vehicles.  As of April 1, 2016, Ontario class G holders who operate a commercial motor vehicle in the United States will have to obtain a medical fitness certificate for the United States.

The FMCSA already has in place regulations that require all commercial motor vehicle drivers in the US to obtain a medical fitness certificate but has never required Ontario non CDL holders to provide proof of medical fitness. The Canada-US medical fitness reciprocity agreement basically recognized that Ontario class A, B, C, D, E and F license holders as having a valid medical because it is a requirement of our license class. In 2013 Ontario started issuing a “W” code for those drivers who have a valid medical for Canada but in the United States would be disqualified under their rules. This allowed US road side inspectors to see if a driver was qualified medically or not.

The FMCSA has now mandated that non commercial license holders who driver smaller commercial vehicles must also be in compliance with US medical fitness certificate starting April 1, 2016 this means class G (class 5 license holders from other provinces) license holders.

Some class G drivers will no longer be able to operate in the United States:

This will mean some class G drivers may no longer be qualified to operate commercial vehicles in the United States due to various medical conditions.  Some items that may disqualify a driver are; insulin dependent diabetes, hearing impairment, epilepsy and monocular vision.  You may try and apply for a medical exemption in some cases and be successful but this will take time and effort.  Drivers who may be affected should start planning now while there is still time.

Ontario Drivers LicenceOntario is offering the following options to assist licences holders with compliance:

1. Utilize a new process developed the MTO whereby a class G driver can submit and receive proof of medical fitness. Drivers must obtain a medical report form that must be completed by a physician, specialist or Nurse Practitioner licensed in Ontario. The form must be faxed to the number shown on the form and include on the cover sheet this statement: This request is for a Medical Confirmation Letter for a G class license holder operating in the United States.” You should keep a copy for your own records including the fax confirmation. Once processed and if you pass the medical standards for the US, Ontario will mail you out a Medical Confirmation Letter which the driver MUST keep in their possession while operating in the United States. Drivers are warned the whole process may take 30 days or more.  Here a fax cover sheet for you to use.

2. Upgrade your class of license to one that does require a medical

3. Use the services of a certified medical examiner in the US and have them issue your certificate.

Drivers are reminded it is their responsibility to reapply for their Medical Confirmation Letter using the following time table:

• Drivers under the age of 46 are required to submit a medical report every five years
• Drivers aged 46 – 64 are required to submit a medical report every three years
• Drivers aged 65 and over are required to submit a medical report annually

Affected class G license holders should address this new requirement as soon as possible to avoid fines and out of services due to non compliance.  You can also expect the province to have some delays in processing all the applications.

If you have any questions feel free to:

contact peter suess transporation consultant

Additional information:

What is a US commercial motor vehicles?

Commercial motor vehicle means any self-propelled or towed motor vehicle used on a highway in interstate commerce to transport passengers or property when the vehicle—

(1) Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating, or gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight, of 4,536 kg (10,001 pounds) or more, whichever is greater; or

(2) Is designed or used to transport more than 8 passengers (including the driver) for compensation; or

(3) Is designed or used to transport more than 15 passengers, including the driver, and is not used to transport passengers for compensation; or

(4) Is used in transporting material found by the Secretary of Transportation to be hazardous under 49 U.S.C. 5103 and transported in a quantity requiring placarding under regulations prescribed by the Secretary under 49 CFR, subtitle B, chapter I, subchapter C.

FMCSA contact information
Information on US medical fitness requirements and disqualifying conditions

Ontario contact information
416-235-1773 or 800-268-1481

 G Class medical fax cover sheet you can use.