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Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Diabetes Mellitus

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government

Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Diabetes Mellitus

Larry W. Minor
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
19 September 2017

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 180 (Tuesday, September 19, 2017)]
[Pages 43808-43809]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-19907]



Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

[FMCSA Docket No. FMCSA-2017-0037]

Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Diabetes 

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

ACTION: Notice of final disposition.


SUMMARY: FMCSA announces its decision to exempt 29 individuals from the 
prohibition in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) 
against persons with insulin-treated diabetes mellitus (ITDM) from 
operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in interstate commerce. The 
exemptions enable these individuals with ITDM to operate CMVs in 
interstate commerce.

DATES: The exemptions were applicable on July 7, 2017. The exemptions 
expire on July 7, 2019.

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., 
E.T., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. If you have 
questions regarding viewing or submitting material to the docket, 
contact Docket Services, telephone (202) 366-9826.


I. Electronic Access

    You may see all the comments online through the Federal Document 
Management System (FDMS) at: http://www.regulations.gov.
    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or 
comments, go to http://www.regulations.gov and/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., E.T., Monday through Friday, 
except Federal holidays.
    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 http://www.regulations.gov, as described in 
the system of records notice (DOT/ALL-14 FDMS), which can be reviewed 
at http://www.dot.gov/privacy.

II. Background

    On June 6, 2017, FMCSA published a notice announcing receipt of 
applications from 29 individuals requesting an exemption from diabetes 
requirement in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(3) and requested comments from the 
public (82 FR 26226). The public comment period ended on July 6, 2017, 
and no comments were received.
    FMCSA has evaluated the eligibility of these applicants and 
determined that granting the exemptions to these individuals would 
achieve a level of safety equivalent to or greater than the level that 
would be achieved by complying with the current regulation 49 CFR 
    The physical qualification standard for drivers regarding diabetes 
found in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(3) states that a person is physically 
qualified to drive a CMV if that person:

    Has no established medical history or clinical diagnosis of 
diabetes mellitus currently requiring insulin for control.

III. Discussion of Comments

    FMCSA received no comments in this proceeding.

IV. Basis for Exemption Determination

    Under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, FMCSA may grant an exemption 
from the diabetes standard in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(3) if the exemption is 
likely to achieve an equivalent or greater level of safety than would 
be achieved without the exemption. The exemption allows the applicants 
to operate CMVs in interstate commerce.
    The Agency's decision regarding these exemption applications is 
based on the program eligibility criteria and an individualized 
assessment of information submitted by each applicant.
    These 29 applicants have had ITDM over a range of 1 to 37 years. 
These applicants report no severe hypoglycemic reactions resulting in 
loss of consciousness or seizure, requiring

[[Page 43809]]

the assistance of another person, or resulting in impaired cognitive 
function that occurred without warning symptoms, in the past 12 months 
and no recurrent (two or more) severe hypoglycemic episodes in the past 
five years. In each case, an endocrinologist verified that the driver 
has demonstrated a willingness to properly monitor and manage his/her 
diabetes mellitus, received education related to diabetes management, 
and is on a stable insulin regimen. These drivers report no other 
disqualifying conditions, including diabetes related complications. 
Each meets the vision requirement at 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10).
    The qualifications, experience, and medical condition of each 
applicant were stated and discussed in detail in the June 6, 2017, 
Federal Register notice (82 FR 26226) and will not be repeated in this 
    Consequently, FMCSA finds that in each case exempting these 
applicants from the diabetes requirement in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(3) is 
likely to achieve a level of safety equal to that existing without the 

V. Conditions and Requirements

    The terms and conditions of the exemption are provided to the 
applicants in the exemption document and includes the following: (1) 
Each driver must submit a quarterly monitoring checklist completed by 
the treating endocrinologist as well as an annual checklist with a 
comprehensive medical evaluation; (2) each driver must report within 
two business days of occurrence, all episodes of severe hypoglycemia, 
significant complications, or inability to manage diabetes; also, any 
involvement in an accident or any other adverse event in a CMV or 
personal vehicle, whether or not it is related to an episode of 
hypoglycemia; (3) each driver must provide a copy of the 
ophthalmologist's or optometrist's report to the Medical Examiner at 
the time of the annual medical examination; and (4) each driver must 
provide a copy of the annual medical certification to the employer for 
retention in the driver's qualification file, or keeping a copy in his/
her driver's qualification file if he/she is self-employed. The driver 
must also have a copy of the exemption when driving, for presentation 
to a duly authorized Federal, State, or local enforcement official.

VI. Preemption

    During the period the exemption is in effect, no State shall 
enforce any law or regulation that conflicts with this exemption with 
respect to a person operating under the exemption.

VII. Conclusion

    Based upon its evaluation of the 29 exemption applications, FMCSA 
exempts the following drivers from the diabetes requirement in 49 CFR 
391.41(b)(10), subject to the requirements cited above:

Tyler J. Bren (ND)
Charlie H. Brown, Jr. (GA)
Ajax A. Castro (FL)
Robert J. Conklin (PA)
Luke S. Davidson (CA)
Joseph R. DePra (IN)
Joseph P. Finan (RI)
Luis Garcia (NJ)
Eric E.T. Gheen (OH)
Aron A. Hanson (IL)
Tyler J. Hanson (ID)
Antonio K. Hoes (MD)
Ronald O. Knighten (WA)
Stephen P. Koons (PA)
Angel Luna (PA)
David Mills (NH)
Kenneth J. Moe (MN)
James L. Pearson (NY)
Walter R. Rentsch (SD)
Richard D. Revere (PA)
Redmond L. Riley (NC)
James H. Roth, Jr. (PA)
Stephen R. Shaffer (KS)
Matthew J. Thornton (OR)
Michael H. Trayah (VT)
William Wagstaff, 3rd (MD)
Craig A. Wildenberg (WI)
Ronald E. Wulf (MN)
Samuel K. Zeweldie (GA)

    In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, each exemption 
will be valid for two 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.

    Issued on: September 13, 2017.
Larry W. Minor,
Associate Administrator for Policy.
[FR Doc. 2017-19907 Filed 9-18-17; 8:45 am]

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