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Drivers Out-of-Service Critieria, a Review


The CVSA (Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance) recently released the revised North American Standard Out of Service Criteria. This Criteria became effective on April 1 and goes over the conditions for placing vehicles and drivers Out-of-Service at roadside safety inspections. Below is a review of the criteria that will cause a driver to be forced Out-of-Service during and inspection (remember, a driver cannot operate again until those items that rendered them out of service are resolved):

Driver Out-of-Service criteria:

  • Interstate driver is less than 21 years old (this also applies to intrastate drivers if hauling placarded load).
  • Not properly licensed, including lack of proper CDL endorsement for type of vehicle being operated.
  • Holds a learner’s permit but is not accompanied by the holder of a valid CDL; does not hold a valid automobile license; or is transporting regulated hazardous materials.
  • Lacks waiver of physical disqualification or equivalent exemption.
  • No skill performance evaluation certificate in driver’s possession, when required.
  • Lacks hearing aid or corrective lenses that are noted on the driver’s medical certificate.
  • Operating a passenger-carrying vehicle without possessing a valid medical certificate.
  • Judged unsafe due to obvious sickness or fatigue.
  • Unable to communicate sufficiently to understand and respond to official inquiries and directions.
  • Disqualified by FMCSA regulation 391.15 (Disqualification of Drivers, general rule).
  • Possesses or, to any degree, is under the influence of unauthorized drugs or alcohol (driver will be placed Out-of-Service for 24 hours).
  • Violates an Out-of-Service order related to intoxicating beverages (driver will be placed Out-of-Service for 24 hours).
  • Hours of Service: Driver of a property-carrying vehicle will be put Out-of-Service until eligibility is reestablished for any of the following violations: driving more than 11 hours; driving after the 14th hour after coming on duty following 10 consecutive hours off duty; and barring a 34-hour restart, driving after having been on duty more than 60 hours in seven consecutive days or more than 70 hours in eight consecutive days. Driver will be placed Out-of-Service until the eligibility to drive has been reestablished.
  • Log Books: Falsification of required driver logs; not having logs for previous eight days. Driver will be placed Out-of-Service for 10 consecutive hours.


While the review above is quite comprehensive of what will put a driver Out-of-Service, it is recommended that all commercial vehicle operators obtain the Official CVSA North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria. The official version contains complete details, graphics and federal regulation references for the criteria for both vehicles and drivers. To obtain the official criteria, visit the CVSA’s online store at or call 301.830.6143.


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