Bus and truck drivers must report health risks

New guidelines ‘allow drivers with managed health conditions’ to continue working

All bus and truck drivers will be required to notify the licensing authority should their health deteriorate. Photograph: Kate Geraghty

All bus and truck drivers will be required to notify the licensing authority should their health deteriorate. Photograph: Kate Geraghty

Thu, Apr 24, 2014, 22:27


New guidelines for bus and truck drivers, including higher standards of physical and mental fitness, have been published by the National Programme for Traffic Medicine.

As in the past, the guidelines will require all bus and truck drivers, known as Group 2 drivers, to submit a medical report with their application for a driving licence. In addition, drivers will in future be required to notify the licensing authority should their health deteriorate or change in a way that would impact on their ability to drive safely for a period of time longer than six months.

The current maximum licensing period for a Group 2 driver is five years.

Prof Desmond O’Neill, national programme director for Traffic Medicine said the new guidelines would allow drivers with well-managed health conditions to continue to drive safely.

He said it was “important to remember that if you report your condition, it doesn’t necessarily mean you will lose your licence. It might mean that you have to see your doctor more often to check that your condition is well-managed or it might mean that there are some restrictions placed on your driving.”

‘Clear protocols’

Declan Naughton of the Road Safety Authority said it was vital to stress no driver should fear losing their licence as a result of the new guidelines. “In fact, the opposite is the case. The guidelines set out clear protocols as to how any medical issues can be better managed to ensure a driver’s livelihood and safety on our roads.”