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Notice

Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Diabetes Mellitus

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AGENCY:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

ACTION:

Notice of applications for exemption from the diabetes mellitus standard; request for comments.

SUMMARY:

FMCSA announces receipt of applications from 22 individuals for exemption from the prohibition against persons with insulin-treated diabetes mellitus (ITDM) operating commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce. If granted, the exemptions would enable these individuals with ITDM to operate CMVs in interstate commerce.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before October 7, 2011.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments bearing the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Docket No. FMCSA-2011-0193 using any of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.
  • Mail: Docket Management Facility; U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001.
  • Hand Delivery: West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays.
  • Fax: 1-202-493-2251.

Instructions: Each submission must include the Agency name and the docket numbers for this notice. Note that all comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. Please see the Privacy Act heading below for further information.

Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments, go to http://www.regulations.gov at any time or Room W12-140 on the ground level of the West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) is available 24 hours each day, 365 days each year. If you want acknowledgment that we received your comments, please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope or postcard or print the acknowledgement page that appears after submitting comments on-line.

Privacy Act: Anyone may search the electronic form of all comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or of the person signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's Privacy Act Statement for the FDMS published in the Federal Register on January 17, 2008 (73 FR 3316), or you may visit http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/​2008/​pdf/​E8-785.pdf.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Elaine M. Papp, Chief, Medical Programs, (202) 366-4001, fmcsamedical@dot.gov, FMCSA, Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Room W64-224, Washington, DC 20590-0001. Office hours are from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

Under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, FMCSA may grant an exemption from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations for a 2-year period if it finds “such exemption would likely achieve a level of safety that is equivalent to or greater than the level that would be achieved absent such exemption.” The statute also allows the Agency to renew exemptions at the end of the 2-year period. The 22 individuals listed in this notice have recently requested such an exemption from the diabetes prohibition in 49 CFR 391.41(b) (3), which applies to drivers of CMVs in interstate commerce. Accordingly, the Agency will evaluate the qualifications of each applicant to determine whether granting the exemption will achieve the required level of safety mandated by the statutes.

Qualifications of Applicants

Johnathan A. Akins

Mr. Akins, age 39, has had ITDM since approximately 1995. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Akins understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Akins meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His ophthalmologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A Commercial Driver's License (CDL) from Georgia.

Robert G. Bellows

Mr. Bellows, 58, has had ITDM since 2004. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Bellows understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Bellows meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His ophthalmologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has stable nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class D operator's license from Arizona.

Phillip J. Blake

Mr. Blake, 56, has had ITDM since 2010. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Blake understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Blake meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from Minnesota.

Mark A. Blanton

Mr. Blanton, 24, has had ITDM since 2003. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function Start Printed Page 55461that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Blanton understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Blanton meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds an operator's license from Indiana.

Howard T. Cash

Mr. Cash, 55, has had ITDM since 2011. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Cash understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Cash meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His ophthalmologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has stable nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from Illinois.

Heath J. Chesser

Mr. Chesser, 21, has had ITDM since 2005. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Chesser understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Chesser meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class D operator's license from Alabama.

Kevin F. Connacher

Mr. Connacher, 53, has had ITDM since 2011. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Connacher understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Connacher meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL license from Pennsylvania.

Daryl A. Daniels

Mr. Daniels, 60, has had ITDM since 2010. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Daniels understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Daniels meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from Ohio.

Carl W. Frentz, Jr.

Mr. Frentz, 52, has had ITDM since the late 1990s. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Frentz understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Frentz meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His ophthalmologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has stable nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class M Operator's license from Virginia.

Carie L. Frisby

Ms. Frisby, 47, has had ITDM since 2009. Her endocrinologist examined her in 2011 and certified that she has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. Her endocrinologist certifies that Ms. Frisby understands diabetes management and monitoring has stable control of her diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Ms. Frisby meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). Her optometrist examined her in 2011 and certified that she does not have diabetic retinopathy. She holds a Class C operator's license from California.

David A. Gray

Mr. Gray, 58, has had ITDM since 2010. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Gray understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Gray meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from New York.

Dean M. Keeven

Mr. Keeven, 51, has had ITDM since 2008. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Keeven understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Keeven meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that Start Printed Page 55462he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from Michigan.

David L. Killen

Mr. Killen, 37, has had ITDM since 2006. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Killen understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Killen meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class D operator's license from Alabama.

Christopher A. LaBudde

Mr. LaBudde, 31, has had ITDM since 1984. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. LaBudde understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. LaBudde meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His ophthalmologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has stable proliferative diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class D operator's license from Illinois.

Brian A. Mankowski

Mr. Mankowski, 29, has had ITDM since 2011. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Mankowski understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Mankowski meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His ophthalmologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from Illinois.

Jimmie L. Parrish

Mr. Parrish, 68, has had ITDM since approximately 1 year ago. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Parrish understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Parrish meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class D operator's license from Wisconsin.

Robert L. Scheetz

Mr. Scheetz, 29, has had ITDM since age 20. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Scheetz understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Scheetz meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class C operator's license from Washington.

John R. Sheaffer

Mr. Sheaffer, 65, has had ITDM since 2011. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Sheaffer understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Sheaffer meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from Texas.

Benjamin D. Skinner

Mr. Skinner, 26, has had ITDM since 2010. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Skinner understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Skinner meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class D operator's license from New York.

Brian L. Vanlerberg

Mr. Vanlerberg, 34, has had ITDM since 2007. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Vanlerberg understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Vanlerberg meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class D operator's license from Ohio.

Robert E. Welling

Mr. Welling, 57, has had ITDM since 1979. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the Start Printed Page 55463past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Welling understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Welling meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His ophthalmologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has stable nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class A CDL from Ohio.

Keith M. Weymouth

Mr. Weymouth, 42, has had ITDM since 1985. His endocrinologist examined him in 2011 and certified that he has had no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in loss of consciousness, requiring the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive function that occurred without warning in the past 12 months and no recurrent (2 or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the last 5 years. His endocrinologist certifies that Mr. Weymouth understands diabetes management and monitoring, has stable control of his diabetes using insulin, and is able to drive a CMV safely. Mr. Weymouth meets the requirements of the vision standard at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). His optometrist examined him in 2011 and certified that he does not have diabetic retinopathy. He holds a Class B CDL from Maine.

Request for Comments

In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, FMCSA requests public comment from all interested persons on the exemption petitions described in this notice. We will consider all comments received before the close of business on the closing date indicated in the dates section of the notice.

FMCSA notes that section 4129 of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible and Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users requires the Secretary to revise its diabetes exemption program established on September 3, 2003 (68 FR 52441).[1] The revision must provide for individual assessment of drivers with diabetes mellitus, and be consistent with the criteria described in section 4018 of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (49 U.S.C. 31305).

Section 4129 requires: (1) Elimination of the requirement for 3 years of experience operating CMVs while being treated with insulin; and (2) establishment of a specified minimum period of insulin use to demonstrate stable control of diabetes before being allowed to operate a CMV.

In response to section 4129, FMCSA made immediate revisions to the diabetes exemption program established by the September 3, 2003 notice. FMCSA discontinued use of the 3-year driving experience and fulfilled the requirements of section 4129 while continuing to ensure that operation of CMVs by drivers with ITDM will achieve the requisite level of safety required of all exemptions granted under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e).

Section 4129(d) also directed FMCSA to ensure that drivers of CMVs with ITDM are not held to a higher standard than other drivers, with the exception of limited operating, monitoring and medical requirements that are deemed medically necessary.

The FMCSA concluded that all of the operating, monitoring and medical requirements set out in the September 3, 2003 notice, except as modified, were in compliance with section 4129(d). Therefore, all of the requirements set out in the September 3, 2003 notice, except as modified by the notice in the Federal Register on November 8, 2005 (70 FR 67777), remain in effect.

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Issued on: August 29, 2011.

Larry W. Minor,

Associate Administrator, Office of Policy.

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Footnotes

1.  Section 4129(a) refers to the 2003 notice as a “final rule.” However, the 2003 notice did not issue a “final rule” but did establish the procedures and standards for issuing exemptions for drivers with ITDM.

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[FR Doc. 2011-22755 Filed 9-6-11; 8:45 am]

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