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Notice

Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders

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AGENCY:

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.

ACTION:

Notice of final disposition.

SUMMARY:

FMCSA announces its decision to renew exemptions for 11 individuals from the requirement in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) that interstate commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers have “no established medical history or clinical diagnosis of epilepsy or any other condition which is likely to cause loss of consciousness or any loss of ability to control a CMV.” The exemptions enable these individuals who have had one or more seizures and are taking anti-seizure medication to continue to operate CMVs in interstate commerce.

DATES:

Each group of renewed exemptions were applicable on the dates stated in the discussions below and will expire on the dates provided below.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ms. Christine A. Hydock, Chief, Medical Programs Division, (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., ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. If you have questions regarding viewing or submitting material to the docket, contact Docket Operations, (202) 366-9826.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Public Participation

A. Viewing Documents and Comments

To view comments, as well as any documents mentioned in this notice as being available in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov. Insert the docket number, FMCSA-2006-25854; FMCSA-2013-0108; FMCSA-2014-0382; FMCSA-2015-0115; FMCSA-2015-0116; FMCSA-2015-0119; FMCSA-2017-0252, in the keyword box, and click “Search.” Next, click the “Open Docket Folder” button and choose the document to review. If you do not have access to the internet, you Start Printed Page 10810may view the docket online by visiting Docket Operations in Room W12-140 on the ground floor of the DOT West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

B. Privacy Act

In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 553(c), DOT solicits comments from the public to better inform its rulemaking process. DOT posts these comments, without edit, including any personal information the commenter provides, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice (DOT/ALL-14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at www.transportation.gov/​privacy.

II. Background

On December 30, 2019, FMCSA published a notice announcing its decision to renew exemptions for 11 individuals from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(8) to operate a CMV in interstate commerce and requested comments from the public (84 FR 72112). The public comment period ended on January 29, 2020, and one comment was received.

FMCSA has evaluated the eligibility of these applicants and determined that renewing these exemptions would achieve a level of safety equivalent to, or greater than, the level that would be achieved by complying with § 391.41(b)(8).

The physical qualification standard for drivers regarding epilepsy found in § 391.41(b)(8) states that a person is physically qualified to drive a CMV if that person has no established medical history or clinical diagnosis of epilepsy or any other condition which is likely to cause the loss of consciousness or any loss of ability to control a CMV.

In addition to the regulations, FMCSA has published advisory criteria [1] to assist medical examiners in determining whether drivers with certain medical conditions are qualified to operate a CMV in interstate commerce.

III. Discussion of Comments

FMCSA received one comment in this proceeding. This comment supported granting these exemptions.

IV. Conclusion

Based on its evaluation of the 11 renewal exemption applications and comment received, FMCSA announces its decision to exempt the following drivers from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in § 391.41(b)(8).

In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315(b), the following groups of drivers received renewed exemptions in the month of December and are discussed below.

As of December 16, 2019, and in accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315(b), the following five individuals have satisfied the renewal conditions for obtaining an exemption from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in the FMCSRs for interstate CMV drivers (84 FR 72112):

William Brown (NC)

Robert J. Forney (WI)

Curtis Alan Hartman (MD)

Wendell F. Headley (MO)

Marion Legg (MD)

The drivers were included in docket numbers FMCSA-2015-0115, FMCSA-2015-0116, and FMCSA-2015-0119. Their exemptions are applicable as of December 16, 2019, and will expire on December 16, 2021.

As of December 23, 2019, and in accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315(b), the following five individuals have satisfied the renewal conditions for obtaining an exemption from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in the FMCSRs for interstate CMV drivers (84 FR 72112):

Gary Freeman (WI)

Aaron Gillette (SD)

David Kestner (VA)

Chad Smith (MA)

Trever Williams (MN)

The drivers were included in docket number FMCSA-2006-25854, FMCSA-2013-0108, and FMCSA-2014-0382. Their exemptions are applicable as of December 23, 2019, and will expire on December 23, 2021.

As of December 28, 2019, and in accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315(b), the following individual has satisfied the renewal conditions for obtaining an exemption from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in the FMCSRs for interstate CMV driver (84 FR 72112): David Pamperin (WI).

This driver was included in docket number FMCSA-2017-0252. His exemption is applicable as of December 28, 2019, and will expire on December 28, 2021.

In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31315(b), each exemption will be valid for 2 years from the effective date unless revoked earlier by FMCSA. The exemption will be revoked if the following occurs: (1) The person fails to comply with the terms and conditions of the exemption; (2) the exemption has resulted in a lower level of safety than was maintained prior to being granted; or (3) continuation of the exemption would not be consistent with the goals and objectives of 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315(b).

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Issued on: February 12, 2020.

Larry W. Minor,

Associate Administrator for Policy.

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Footnotes

1.  These criteria may be found in APPENDIX A TO PART 391—MEDICAL ADVISORY CRITERIA, section H. Epilepsy: § 391.41(b)(8), paragraphs 3, 4, and 5, which is available on the internet at https://www.gpo.gov/​fdsys/​pkg/​CFR-2015-title49-vol5/​pdf/​CFR-2015-title49-vol5-part391-appA.pdf.

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[FR Doc. 2020-03707 Filed 2-24-20; 8:45 am]

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