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Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government

Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders

Larry W. Minor
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
April 13, 2015


[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 70 (Monday, April 13, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 19730-19732]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-08392]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

[Docket No. FMCSA-2014-0382]


Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and 
Seizure Disorders

AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of applications for exemptions; request for comments.

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SUMMARY: FMCSA announces receipt of applications from 19 individuals 
for an exemption from the prohibition against persons with a clinical 
diagnosis of epilepsy or any other condition that is likely to cause a 
loss of consciousness or any loss of ability to operate a commercial 
motor vehicle (CMV) in interstate commerce. The regulation and the 
associated advisory criteria published in the Code of Federal 
Regulations as the ``Instructions for Performing and Recording Physical 
Examinations'' have resulted in numerous drivers being prohibited from 
operating CMVs in interstate commerce based on the fact that they have 
had one or more seizures and are taking anti-seizure medication, rather 
than an individual analysis of their circumstances by a qualified 
medical examiner. If granted, the exemptions would enable these 
individuals who have had one or more seizures and are taking anti-
seizure medication to operate CMVs for up to 2 years in interstate 
commerce.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before May 13, 2015.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments bearing the Federal Docket 
Management System (FDMS) Docket ID FMCSA-2014-0382 using any of the 
following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to 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 or Courier: 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.
    Each submission must include the Agency name and the docket ID for 
this Notice. Note that DOT posts all comments received without change 
to www.regulations.gov, including any personal information included in 
a comment. Please see the Privacy Act heading below.
    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or 
comments, go to 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 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: 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 records notice (DOT/ALL-14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at 
www.dot.gov/privacy.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Charles A. Horan, III, Director, 
Office of Carrier, Driver and Vehicle Safety, (202) 366-4001, or via 
email at fmcsamedical@dot.gov, or by letter to FMCSA, Room W64-113, 
Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, 
DC 20590-0001. Office hours are from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday 
through Friday, except Federal holidays.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Under 49 U.S.C. 31315 and 31136(e), FMCSA may grant an exemption 
for up to 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 statutes 
allow the Agency to renew exemptions

[[Page 19731]]

at the end of the 2-year period. The 19 individuals listed in this 
notice have requested an exemption from the epilepsy prohibition in 49 
CFR 391.41(b)(8), which applies to drivers who operate CMVs as defined 
in 49 CFR 390.5, in interstate commerce. Section 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.
    FMCSA provides medical advisory criteria for use by medical 
examiners in determining whether drivers with certain medical 
conditions should be certified to operate CMVs in intrastate commerce. 
The advisory criteria indicate that if an individual has had a sudden 
episode of a non-epileptic seizure or loss of consciousness of unknown 
cause that did not require anti-seizure medication, the decision 
whether that person's condition is likely to cause the loss of 
consciousness or loss of ability to control a CMV should be made on an 
individual basis by the medical examiner in consultation with the 
treating physician. Before certification is considered, it is suggested 
that a 6-month waiting period elapse from the time of the episode. 
Following the waiting period, it is suggested that the individual have 
a complete neurological examination. If the results of the examination 
are negative and anti-seizure medication is not required, then the 
driver may be qualified.
    In those individual cases where a driver had a seizure or an 
episode of loss of consciousness that resulted from a known medical 
condition (e.g., drug reaction, high temperature, acute infectious 
disease, dehydration, or acute metabolic disturbance), certification 
should be deferred until the driver has recovered fully from that 
condition, has no existing residual complications, and is not taking 
anti-seizure medication. Drivers who have a history of epilepsy/
seizures, off anti-seizure medication and seizure-free for 10 years, 
may be qualified to operate a CMV in interstate commerce. Interstate 
drivers with a history of a single unprovoked seizure may be qualified 
to drive a CMV in interstate commerce if seizure-free and off anti-
seizure medication for a 5-year period or more.

Submitting Comments

    You may submit your comments and material online or by fax, mail, 
or hand delivery, but please use only one of these means. FMCSA 
recommends that you include your name and a mailing address, an email 
address, or a phone number in the body of your document so that FMCSA 
can contact you if there are questions regarding your submission. To 
submit your comment online, go to http://www.regulations.gov and in the 
search box insert the docket number ``FMCSA-2014-0382'' and click the 
search button. When the new screen appears, click on the blue ``Comment 
Now!'' button on the right hand side of the page. On the new page, 
enter information required including the specific section of this 
document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for each 
suggestion or recommendation. If you submit your comments by mail or 
hand delivery, submit them in an unbound format, no larger than 8\1/2\ 
by 11 inches, suitable for copying and electronic filing. If you submit 
comments by mail and would like to know that they reached the facility, 
please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard or envelope.
    We will consider all comments and material received during the 
comment period and may change this proposed rule based on your 
comments. FMCSA may issue a final rule at any time after the close of 
the comment period.

Viewing Comments and Documents

    To view comments, as well as any documents mentioned in this 
preamble, To submit your comment online, go to http://www.regulations.gov and in the search box insert the docket number 
``FMCSA-2014-0382'' and click ``Search.'' Next, click ``Open Docket 
Folder'' and you will find all documents and comments related to the 
proposed rulemaking.

Summary of Applications

Daryl Charles Anderson

    Mr. Anderson is a 61 year-old class A CDL holder in Michigan. He 
has a history of a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 
1989. He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency 
remaining the same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would 
like to drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. 
Anderson receiving an exemption.

Cody Allen Baker

    Mr. Baker is a 24 year-old driver in Michigan. He has a history of 
a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free for more than four 
years. He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency 
remaining the same since December 2013. If granted the exemption, he 
would like to drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive 
of Mr. Baker receiving an exemption.

Ronald J. Bennett

    Mr. Bennett is a 58 year-old class B CDL holder in New York. He has 
a history of epilepsy and has remained seizure free since 2002. He 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would like to 
drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Bennett 
receiving an exemption.

Don Carrol Darbyshire

    Mr. Darbyshire is a 51 year-old class B CDL holder in Iowa. He has 
a history of epilepsy and has remained seizure free since 1993. He 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would like to 
drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. 
Darbyshire receiving an exemption.

Monte James DeRocini

    Mr. DeRocini is a 53 year-old class A CDL holder in Pennsylvania. 
He has a history of a single seizure in 2011. He takes anti-seizure 
medication with the dosage and frequency remaining the same since that 
time. If granted the exemption, he would like to drive a CMV. His 
physician states that he is supportive of Mr. DeRocini receiving an 
exemption.

Martin L. Ford

    Mr. Ford is a 57 year-old class C CDL holder in Mississippi. He has 
a history of seizures and has remained seizure free since 2003. He 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since 2008. If granted the exemption, he would like to drive a 
CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Ford receiving 
an exemption.

Glen Michael Gervais

    Mr. Gervais is a 52 year-old driver in Florida. He has a history of 
a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 2011. He takes 
anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining the 
same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would like to drive 
a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Gervais 
receiving an exemption.

Roger Green

    Mr. Green is a 60 year-old class A CDL holder in Pennsylvania. He 
has a history of a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 
1971. He takes anti-seizure medication with the

[[Page 19732]]

dosage and frequency remaining the same since 2004. If granted the 
exemption, he would like to drive a CMV. His physician states that he 
is supportive of Mr. Green receiving an exemption.

Susie B. Harvey

    Ms. Harvey is a 64 year-old class B CDL holder in Virginia. She has 
a history of epilepsy and has remained seizure free since 1985. She 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since that time. If granted the exemption, she would like to 
drive a CMV. Her physician states that he is supportive of Ms. Harvey 
receiving an exemption.

Timothy G. Huntley

    Mr. Huntley is a 40 year-old class B CDL holder in Maine. He has a 
history of a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 2000. 
He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency 
remaining the same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would 
like to drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. 
Huntley receiving an exemption.

Robert Isaac Keen, Jr.

    Mr. Keen is a 66 year-old driver in Virginia. He has a history of a 
seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 2012. He takes 
anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining the 
same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would like to drive 
a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Keen receiving 
an exemption.

Chance Joseph O'Mary

    Mr. O'Mary is a 29 year-old class A CDL holder in Alaska. He has a 
history of a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 2005. 
He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency 
remaining the same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would 
like to drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. 
O'Mary receiving an exemption.

Larry Todd Lintelman

    Mr. Lintelman is a 48 year-old class A CDL holder in Alaska. He has 
a history of seizures and has remained seizure free since 2012. He 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would like to 
drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. 
Lintelman receiving an exemption.

Robert D. Richter, Sr.

    Mr. Richter is a 58 year-old driver in Pennsylvania. He has a 
history of a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 1976. 
He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency 
remaining the same since that time. If granted the exemption, he would 
like to drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. 
Richter receiving an exemption.

Robert R. Rosebrough, Jr.

    Mr. Rosebrough is a 45 year-old class A CDL holder in Ohio. He has 
a history of epilepsy and has remained seizure free since May 2014. He 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since November 2014. If granted the exemption, he would like 
to drive a CMV. His physician states that since it has only been nine 
months since his last event of loss of consciousness, Mr. Rosebrough 
may drive his personal vehicle until he has been seizure free for 8 
years.

Michael Scott Shumake

    Mr. Shumake is a 37 year-old driver in Virginia. He has a history 
of a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 2000. He 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since 2001. If granted the exemption, he would like to drive a 
CMV. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Shumake 
receiving an exemption.

Charles Ray Taylor

    Mr. Taylor is a 49 year-old class A CDL holder in Mississippi. He 
has a history of a single seizure in 2009. He takes anti-seizure 
medication with the dosage and frequency remaining the same since that 
time. If granted the exemption, he would like to drive a CMV. His 
physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Taylor receiving an 
exemption.

Karin Hawley Wagasy

    Ms. Wagasy is a 58 year-old driver in Tennessee. She has a history 
of a seizure disorder and has remained seizure free since 1975. She 
takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining 
the same since that time. If granted the exemption, she would like to 
drive a CMV. Her physician states that he is supportive of Ms. Wagasy 
receiving an exemption.

Trever A. Williams

    Mr. Williams is a 44 year-old class A CDL holder in Minnesota. He 
has a history of a single seizure in 1983 which occurred 
postoperatively, after a surgical procedure to remove a foreign body 
from his head. He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and 
frequency remaining the same since 2006. If granted the exemption, he 
would like to drive a CMV. His physician states that he is supportive 
of Mr. Williams receiving an exemption.

Request for Comments

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

    Issued on: April 7, 2015.
Larry W. Minor,
Associate Administrator for Policy.
[FR Doc. 2015-08392 Filed 4-10-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P

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