As a truck driver, your Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) is your livelihood, so it is important to know which drugs –both legal and illegal — might put your career in jeopardy.
The U.S. Department of Transportation requires truck drivers to take pre-employment drug tests that screen for the following substances:
- Amphetamines (Amphetamine, Methamphetamine, MDMA, MDA)
- Opioids (Codeine, Morphine, Heroin, Hydrocodone, Hydromorphone, Oxycodone, Oxymorphone)
- Phencyclidine (PCP)
If you test positive for any of the drugs listed above, you could be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle. It’s important to note that even though marijuana use has been legalized in many states, it remains illegal on a federal level.
Medications That Could Cost You Your CDL
There are some medications that can be legally prescribed by a physician or that could also disqualify you from keeping your CDL.
Some of these medications are defined by the U.S. Department of Transportation as Schedule I drugs and the list includes opiates, opium derivatives, hallucinogenic drugs, some depressants and stimulants, or Cannabimimetic agents (synthetic marijuana).
If you are prescribed a medication that is either on the DOT’s Schedule I list or is an amphetamine, a narcotic, or any other habit forming drug, you are prohibited from operating a motor vehicle unless the prescribing physician provides your DOT medical examiner with a letter giving you clearance to drive. Even then, it is up to the DOT medical examiner — not the prescribing physician — to determine whether the drug disqualifies you from operating a commercial motor vehicle.
Medications That Are Never Allowed, Even With Waiver
- Medical Marijuana
- CBD Products That Contain THC
- Any Anti-seizure Medication
Common Medications That Pose Potential Problems But Could Be Approved On a Case-By Case Basis (not comprehensive) — If your physician can show that these medications do not affect your ability to drive, it is possible that the DOT medical examiner could approve their use.
To view the full list of Schedule I drugs, please click here.
To learn more from the FMCSA on what drugs can disqualify a CMV driver, please click here.