Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Vision, 6694-6697 [2018-03064]

Download as PDF 6694 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 31 / Wednesday, February 14, 2018 / Notices Jeffrey P. James (AR) Tracy N. Jenkins (DE) Gregory A. King (NC) Matthew R. Linehan (NY) Cory A. Meadows (OH) Ashun R. Merritt (GA) Herbert A. Morton (CA) Jayrome B. Rimolde (MN) Gale Roland (PA) John L. Scherette (WA) Kelly T. Scholl (MN) James P. Shurkus (NH) Gregory G. Sisco (IA) Travers L. Stephens (GA) Brittany K. Tomasko (CA) Daren Warren (NY) Alan T. Whalen (NY) Thomas L. Whitley (IN) Randall S. Williams (PA) Tomme J. Wirth (IA) Joshua C. Wyse (OH) Rowland P. Yee (HI) The drivers were included in docket numbers FMCSA–2011–0368; FMCSA– 2013–0192. Their exemptions are applicable as of March 7, 2018, and will expire on March 7, 2020. As of March 23, 2018, and in accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, the following 12 individuals have satisfied the renewal conditions for obtaining an exemption from the rule prohibiting drivers with ITDM from driving CMVs in interstate commerce (77 FR 5870; 77 FR 17116; 81 FR 14210): Roger L. Arcan, Jr. (MA) Marsha M. Colberg (WA) Robert D. Crissinger (MN) Scott W. Forsyth, Jr. (CO) Fritz D. Gregory (UT) Anthony P. Kesselring (FL) Don R. Kivi (ND) Vincent Ligotti (NY) Michael R. Miller (PA) Jack L. Phippen (WI) Richard A. Purk (CA) Jack A. Tidey (AR) The drivers were included in docket number FMCSA–2011–0381. Their exemptions are applicable as of March 23, 2018, and will expire on March 23, 2020. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES The exemptions are extended subject to the following conditions: (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 22:07 Feb 13, 2018 Jkt 244001 V. 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. VI. Conclusion Based upon its evaluation of the 77 exemption applications, FMCSA renews the exemptions of the aforementioned drivers from the rule prohibiting drivers with ITDM from driving CMVs in interstate commerce. In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, each exemption will be valid for two years unless revoked earlier by FMCSA. Issued on: February 7, 2018. Larry W. Minor, Associate Administrator for Policy. [FR Doc. 2018–03056 Filed 2–13–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [Docket No. FMCSA–2018–0006] IV. Conditions and Requirements VerDate Sep<11>2014 not it is related to an episode of hypoglycemia; (3) each driver must submit an annual ophthalmologist’s or optometrist’s report; 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 keep a copy in his/her driver’s qualification file if he/she is selfemployed. The driver must also have a copy of the exemption when driving, for presentation to a duly authorized Federal, State, or local enforcement official. The exemption will be rescinded if: (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 before it was 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. Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Vision Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of applications for exemption; request for comments. AGENCY: FMCSA announces receipt of applications from 11 individuals for an exemption from the vision requirement in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) to operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in interstate commerce. If granted, the SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00188 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 exemptions will enable these individuals to operate CMVs in interstate commerce without meeting the vision requirement in one eye. DATES: Comments must be received on or before March 16, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments bearing the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Docket No. FMCSA– 2018–0006 using any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online 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., e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays. • Fax: 1–202–493–2251. Instructions: Each submission must include the Agency name and the docket number(s) 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., e.t., 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 selfaddressed, stamped envelope or postcard or print the acknowledgement page that appears after submitting comments online. 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. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Christine A. Hydock, Chief, Medical Programs Division, (202) 366–4001, fmcsamedical@dot.gov, FMCSA, E:\FR\FM\14FEN1.SGM 14FEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 31 / Wednesday, February 14, 2018 / Notices daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Room W64–224, Washington, DC 20590–0001. Office hours are 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. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background Under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, FMCSA may grant an exemption from the FMCSRs for a five-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 five-year period. FMCSA grants exemptions from the FMCSRs for a twoyear period to align with the maximum duration of a driver’s medical certification. The 11 individuals listed in this notice have requested an exemption from the vision requirement in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). Accordingly, the Agency will evaluate the qualifications of each applicant to determine whether granting an exemption will achieve the required level of safety mandated by statute. The physical qualification standard for drivers regarding vision found in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10) states that a person is physically qualified to drive a CMV if that person has distant visual acuity of at least 20/40 (Snellen) in each eye without corrective lenses or visual acuity separately corrected to 20/40 (Snellen) or better with corrective lenses, distant binocular acuity of at least 20/40 (Snellen) in both eyes with or without corrective lenses, field of vision of at least 70° in the horizontal Meridian in each eye, and the ability to recognize the colors of traffic signals and devices showing standard red, green, and amber. In July 1992, the Agency first published the criteria for the Vision Waiver Program, which listed the conditions and reporting standards that CMV drivers approved for participation would need to meet (Qualification of Drivers; Vision Waivers, 57 FR 31458, July 16, 1992). The current Vision Exemption Program was established in 1998, following the enactment of amendments to the statutes governing exemptions made by § 4007 of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA–21), Public Law 105–178, 112 Stat. 107, 401 (June 9, 1998). Vision exemptions are considered under the procedures established in 49 CFR part 381 subpart C, on a case-by-case basis VerDate Sep<11>2014 22:07 Feb 13, 2018 Jkt 244001 upon application by CMV drivers who do not meet the vision standards of 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). To qualify for an exemption from the vision requirement, FMCSA requires a person to present verifiable evidence that he/she has driven a commercial vehicle safely with the vision deficiency for the past three years. Recent driving performance is especially important in evaluating future safety, according to several research studies designed to correlate past and future driving performance. Results of these studies support the principle that the best predictor of future performance by a driver is his/her past record of crashes and traffic violations. Copies of the studies may be found at Docket Number FMCSA–1998–3637. FMCSA believes it can properly apply the principle to monocular drivers, because data from the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) former waiver study program clearly demonstrated the driving performance of experienced monocular drivers in the program is better than that of all CMV drivers collectively (See 61 FR 13338, 13345, March 26, 1996). The fact that experienced monocular drivers demonstrated safe driving records in the waiver program supports a conclusion that other monocular drivers, meeting the same qualifying conditions as those required by the waiver program, are also likely to have adapted to their vision deficiency and will continue to operate safely. The first major research correlating past and future performance was done in England by Greenwood and Yule in 1920. Subsequent studies, building on that model, concluded that crash rates for the same individual exposed to certain risks for two different time periods vary only slightly (See Bates and Neyman, University of California Publications in Statistics, April 1952). Other studies demonstrated theories of predicting crash proneness from crash history coupled with other factors. These factors—such as age, sex, geographic location, mileage driven and conviction history—are used every day by insurance companies and motor vehicle bureaus to predict the probability of an individual experiencing future crashes (See Weber, Donald C., ‘‘Accident Rate Potential: An Application of Multiple Regression Analysis of a Poisson Process,’’ Journal of American Statistical Association, June 1971). A 1964 California Driver Record Study prepared by the California Department of Motor Vehicles concluded that the best overall crash predictor for both concurrent and nonconcurrent events is the number of PO 00000 Frm 00189 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 6695 single convictions. This study used three consecutive years of data, comparing the experiences of drivers in the first two years with their experiences in the final year. II. Qualifications of Applicants Russell A. Anklam Mr. Anklam, 52, has had amblyopia in his left eye since childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/25, and in his left eye, 20/200. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘Based on Mr. Anklam’s good peripheral vision in each eye and his exceptional driving record, I feel he is more than qualified to operate a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Anklam reported that he has driven straight trucks for 30 years, accumulating 3.6 million miles, tractor-trailer combinations for 15 years, accumulating 1.2 million miles, and buses for five years, accumulating 250,000 miles. He holds a Class ABCDM CDL from Wisconsin. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. Rodney P. Barfield Mr. Barfield, 50, has a prosthetic right eye due to a traumatic incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is no light perception, and in his left eye, 20/20. Following an examination in 2017, his ophthalmologist stated, ‘‘It is my opinion that Rodney Barfield has sufficient vision to operate a commercial motor vehicle safely, there should be no restrictions imposed.’’ Mr. Barfield reported that he has driven straight trucks for seven years, accumulating 315,000 miles, and tractor-trailer combinations for 19 years, accumulating 2,660,000 miles. He holds a Class A CDL from Georgia. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. Kenneth W. Blake, Jr. Mr. Blake, 60, has had central serous chorioretinopathy in his left eye since August 2014. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, 20/100. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘In my medical opinion, he has sufficient vision to operate a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Blake reported that he has driven straight trucks for 18 years, accumulating 180,000 miles. He holds a Class B CDL from Kansas. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. E:\FR\FM\14FEN1.SGM 14FEN1 6696 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 31 / Wednesday, February 14, 2018 / Notices Efrain R. Cisneros Mr. Cisneros, 54, has aphakia in his left eye due to a traumatic incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, 20/400. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘Excellent vision in the right eye, able to perform driving tasks of a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Cisneros reported that he has driven straight trucks for 11 years, accumulating 528,000 miles, and tractor-trailer combinations for four years, accumulating 300,000 miles. He holds a Class A CDL from California. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. Justin D. Craft Mr. Craft, 57, has corneal scarring in his left eye due to a traumatic incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, light perception. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘Mr. Craft has sufficient vision to perform driving tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Craft reported that he has driven straight trucks for 16 years, accumulating 400,000 miles. He holds an operator’s license from Arkansas. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES James E. Haener Mr. Haener, 66, has a corneal scar in his right eye due to a traumatic incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is hand motion, and in his left eye, 20/20. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘In my medical opinion, James Haener has sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Haener reported that he has driven straight trucks for 45 years, accumulating 225,000 miles, and tractor-trailer combinations for 45 years, accumulating 225,000 miles. He holds a Class A CDL from Idaho. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. Curvin L. Martin Mr. Martin, 40, has had amblyopia in his right eye since childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/70, and in his left eye, 20/20. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘In my opinion, Mr. Martin has sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Martin reported that he has driven tractor-trailer combinations VerDate Sep<11>2014 22:07 Feb 13, 2018 Jkt 244001 for 19 years, accumulating 1.9 million miles. He holds a Class A CDL from Pennsylvania. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and one conviction for a moving violation in a CMV; he disregarded a traffic lane. Robert L. Redding Mr. Redding, 54, has aphakia in his left eye due to a traumatic incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, 20/800. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘Please let this letter serve as notice that Mr. Redding does have sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks required to operate a commercial motor vehicle.’’ Mr. Redding reported that he has driven straight trucks for 21 years, accumulating 315,000 miles. He holds a Class B CDL from North Carolina. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘Despite the vision deficiency of the left eye, it is my professional medical opinion that Jonas has sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Yoder reported that he has driven straight trucks for five years, accumulating 400,000 miles. He holds a Class B CDL from Nebraska. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. III. 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 and material received before the close of business on the closing date indicated in the dates section of the notice. George J. Worthington, Jr. Mr. Worthington, 58, has had amblyopia in his left eye since childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, 20/200. Following an examination in 2017, his ophthalmologist stated, ‘‘His ability to operate a commercial motor vehicle should not be limited due to his longstanding amblyopia of the left eye.’’ Mr. Worthington reported that he has driven straight trucks for 30 years, accumulating 300,000 miles. He holds an operator’s license from New York. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. IV. 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–2018–0006 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 81⁄2 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, selfaddressed postcard or envelope. We will consider all comments and materials received during the comment period. FMCSA may issue a final determination at any time after the close of the comment period. Jonas L. Yoder Mr. Yoder, 57, has had a branch retinal vein occlusion in his left eye since 1995. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, 20/200. Following an examination in V. Viewing Comments and Documents To view comments, as well as any documents mentioned in this preamble, go to http://www.regulations.gov and in the search box insert the docket number FMCSA–2018–0006 and click ‘‘Search.’’ Gerald L. Wheeler Mr. Wheeler, 54, has had amblyopia in his left eye since childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, 20/200. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ‘‘Mr. Wheeler has, in my opinion, sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.’’ Mr. Wheeler reported that he has driven straight trucks for 15 years, accumulating 300,000 miles. He holds an operator’s license from Florida. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV. PO 00000 Frm 00190 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\14FEN1.SGM 14FEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 31 / Wednesday, February 14, 2018 / Notices Next, click ‘‘Open Docket Folder’’ and you will find all documents and comments related to this notice. Issued on: February 7, 2018. Larry W. Minor, Associate Administrator for Policy. [FR Doc. 2018–03064 Filed 2–13–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [Docket No. FMCSA–2007–27801; FMCSA– 2007–28536; FMCSA–2008–0175; FMCSA– 2008–0267; FMCSA–2009–0207; FMCSA– 2011–0192; FMCSA–2013–0181; FMCSA– 2013–0182] Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Diabetes Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of final disposition. AGENCY: FMCSA announces its decision to renew exemptions for 99 individuals from its prohibition in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) against persons with insulin-treated diabetes mellitus (ITDM) from operating commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce. The exemptions enable these individuals with ITDM 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 stated in the discussions below. 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 5:30 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. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES 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 VerDate Sep<11>2014 22:07 Feb 13, 2018 Jkt 244001 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 November 27, 2017, FMCSA published a notice announcing its decision to renew exemptions for 99 individuals from the insulin-treated diabetes mellitus prohibition in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(3) to operate a CMV in interstate commerce and requested comments from the public (82 FR 56111). The public comment period ended on December 27, 2017, and no comments were received. As stated in the previous notice, 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 the current regulation 49 CFR 391.41(b)(3). 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 preceding. IV. Conclusion Based upon its evaluation of the 99 renewal exemption applications and comments received, FMCSA confirms its’ decision to exempt the following drivers from the rule prohibiting drivers with ITDM from driving CMVs in interstate commerce in 49 CFR 391.64(3): In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, the following groups of drivers received renewed exemptions in the month of October and are discussed below: As of October 3, 2017, and in accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, the following 16 individuals have satisfied the renewal conditions for obtaining an exemption from the rule prohibiting drivers with ITDM from PO 00000 Frm 00191 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 6697 driving CMVs in interstate commerce (76 FR 47291; 76 FR 61139): Michael J. Alexander (MO) Dean A. Chamberlin (NE) Ronald D. Fatka (IA) Frank B. Hernandez (MN) Dale A. Iverson (UT) John H. Krastel, Jr. (MD) Edward Linhart (MA) Larry D. Matson (MT) David W. Payne (KS) Jim B. Robertson II (KY) Donald M. Rush, Jr. (GA) Barry A. Sircy (KY) John S. Starchevich (IA) Michael B. Tortora (VT) Charlotte C. Watson (CA) Shaun M. Wheeler (CT) The drivers were included in docket number FMCSA–2011–0192. Their exemptions are applicable as of October 3, 2017, and will expire on October 3, 2019. As of October 15, 2017, and in accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, the following 43 individuals have satisfied the renewal conditions for obtaining an exemption from the rule prohibiting drivers with ITDM from driving CMVs in interstate commerce (72 FR 45480; 72 FR 58360; 73 FR 45519; 73 FR 61188; 78 FR 50486; 78 FR 65031): Scott M. Aitcheson (MI) Robert V. Balmes (IL) Kenneth M. Brinker (SD) Daniel A. Brown (IN) Floyd G. Burbach (SD) Frederick J. Caldarelli III (KS) Jay P. Cave (IL) William J. Compton (MI) Brian R. Current (IA) Mark A. Davis (AR) Todd J. Donnelly (IA) Carmine J. Fossile (MA) Steven M. French (MI) Philip P. Gray (VA) John L. Hansen (MT) Michael G. Harp (OK) Darin D. Harries (MN) James M. Holland (WA) William E. Hollowell (MI) Matthew S. Hooker (IN) Cindy L. Hushin-Brink (PA) Gregory A. Iverson (IA) Bradley M. Johnson (ID) Mark A. Jones (WI) Michael J. Keating (IL) Richard D. Knoche (IL) Jonathan D. Koehn (NE) Edward M. Mason (KY) Harold W. McCullough (NE) Kurt V. Miller (IL) Tyree L. Murdock II (FL) Thomas L. Nesbit (PA) Richard Rodriguez (KS) Scott D. Schultz (MN) Mark W. Seem (IN) E:\FR\FM\14FEN1.SGM 14FEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 31 (Wednesday, February 14, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 6694-6697]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-03064]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

[Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0006]


Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Vision

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

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

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: FMCSA announces receipt of applications from 11 individuals 
for an exemption from the vision requirement in the Federal Motor 
Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) to operate a commercial motor 
vehicle (CMV) in interstate commerce. If granted, the exemptions will 
enable these individuals to operate CMVs in interstate commerce without 
meeting the vision requirement in one eye.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before March 16, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments bearing the Federal Docket 
Management System (FDMS) Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0006 using any of the 
following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online 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., 
e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays.
     Fax: 1-202-493-2251.
    Instructions: Each submission must include the Agency name and the 
docket number(s) 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., e.t., 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 online.
    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.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Christine A. Hydock, Chief, 
Medical Programs Division, (202) 366-4001, [email protected], FMCSA,

[[Page 6695]]

Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Room W64-224, 
Washington, DC 20590-0001. Office hours are 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.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    Under 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, FMCSA may grant an exemption 
from the FMCSRs for a five-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 
five-year period. FMCSA grants exemptions from the FMCSRs for a two-
year period to align with the maximum duration of a driver's medical 
certification.
    The 11 individuals listed in this notice have requested an 
exemption from the vision requirement in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10). 
Accordingly, the Agency will evaluate the qualifications of each 
applicant to determine whether granting an exemption will achieve the 
required level of safety mandated by statute.
    The physical qualification standard for drivers regarding vision 
found in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(10) states that a person is physically 
qualified to drive a CMV if that person has distant visual acuity of at 
least 20/40 (Snellen) in each eye without corrective lenses or visual 
acuity separately corrected to 20/40 (Snellen) or better with 
corrective lenses, distant binocular acuity of at least 20/40 (Snellen) 
in both eyes with or without corrective lenses, field of vision of at 
least 70[deg] in the horizontal Meridian in each eye, and the ability 
to recognize the colors of traffic signals and devices showing standard 
red, green, and amber.
    In July 1992, the Agency first published the criteria for the 
Vision Waiver Program, which listed the conditions and reporting 
standards that CMV drivers approved for participation would need to 
meet (Qualification of Drivers; Vision Waivers, 57 FR 31458, July 16, 
1992). The current Vision Exemption Program was established in 1998, 
following the enactment of amendments to the statutes governing 
exemptions made by Sec.  4007 of the Transportation Equity Act for the 
21st Century (TEA-21), Public Law 105-178, 112 Stat. 107, 401 (June 9, 
1998). Vision exemptions are considered under the procedures 
established in 49 CFR part 381 subpart C, on a case-by-case basis upon 
application by CMV drivers who do not meet the vision standards of 49 
CFR 391.41(b)(10).
    To qualify for an exemption from the vision requirement, FMCSA 
requires a person to present verifiable evidence that he/she has driven 
a commercial vehicle safely with the vision deficiency for the past 
three years. Recent driving performance is especially important in 
evaluating future safety, according to several research studies 
designed to correlate past and future driving performance. Results of 
these studies support the principle that the best predictor of future 
performance by a driver is his/her past record of crashes and traffic 
violations. Copies of the studies may be found at Docket Number FMCSA-
1998-3637.
    FMCSA believes it can properly apply the principle to monocular 
drivers, because data from the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) 
former waiver study program clearly demonstrated the driving 
performance of experienced monocular drivers in the program is better 
than that of all CMV drivers collectively (See 61 FR 13338, 13345, 
March 26, 1996). The fact that experienced monocular drivers 
demonstrated safe driving records in the waiver program supports a 
conclusion that other monocular drivers, meeting the same qualifying 
conditions as those required by the waiver program, are also likely to 
have adapted to their vision deficiency and will continue to operate 
safely.
    The first major research correlating past and future performance 
was done in England by Greenwood and Yule in 1920. Subsequent studies, 
building on that model, concluded that crash rates for the same 
individual exposed to certain risks for two different time periods vary 
only slightly (See Bates and Neyman, University of California 
Publications in Statistics, April 1952). Other studies demonstrated 
theories of predicting crash proneness from crash history coupled with 
other factors. These factors--such as age, sex, geographic location, 
mileage driven and conviction history--are used every day by insurance 
companies and motor vehicle bureaus to predict the probability of an 
individual experiencing future crashes (See Weber, Donald C., 
``Accident Rate Potential: An Application of Multiple Regression 
Analysis of a Poisson Process,'' Journal of American Statistical 
Association, June 1971). A 1964 California Driver Record Study prepared 
by the California Department of Motor Vehicles concluded that the best 
overall crash predictor for both concurrent and nonconcurrent events is 
the number of single convictions. This study used three consecutive 
years of data, comparing the experiences of drivers in the first two 
years with their experiences in the final year.

II. Qualifications of Applicants

Russell A. Anklam

    Mr. Anklam, 52, has had amblyopia in his left eye since childhood. 
The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/25, and in his left eye, 20/
200. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ``Based 
on Mr. Anklam's good peripheral vision in each eye and his exceptional 
driving record, I feel he is more than qualified to operate a 
commercial vehicle.'' Mr. Anklam reported that he has driven straight 
trucks for 30 years, accumulating 3.6 million miles, tractor-trailer 
combinations for 15 years, accumulating 1.2 million miles, and buses 
for five years, accumulating 250,000 miles. He holds a Class ABCDM CDL 
from Wisconsin. His driving record for the last three years shows no 
crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV.

Rodney P. Barfield

    Mr. Barfield, 50, has a prosthetic right eye due to a traumatic 
incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is no light 
perception, and in his left eye, 20/20. Following an examination in 
2017, his ophthalmologist stated, ``It is my opinion that Rodney 
Barfield has sufficient vision to operate a commercial motor vehicle 
safely, there should be no restrictions imposed.'' Mr. Barfield 
reported that he has driven straight trucks for seven years, 
accumulating 315,000 miles, and tractor-trailer combinations for 19 
years, accumulating 2,660,000 miles. He holds a Class A CDL from 
Georgia. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes 
and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV.

Kenneth W. Blake, Jr.

    Mr. Blake, 60, has had central serous chorioretinopathy in his left 
eye since August 2014. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and 
in his left eye, 20/100. Following an examination in 2017, his 
optometrist stated, ``In my medical opinion, he has sufficient vision 
to operate a commercial vehicle.'' Mr. Blake reported that he has 
driven straight trucks for 18 years, accumulating 180,000 miles. He 
holds a Class B CDL from Kansas. His driving record for the last three 
years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a 
CMV.

[[Page 6696]]

Efrain R. Cisneros

    Mr. Cisneros, 54, has aphakia in his left eye due to a traumatic 
incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and 
in his left eye, 20/400. Following an examination in 2017, his 
optometrist stated, ``Excellent vision in the right eye, able to 
perform driving tasks of a commercial vehicle.'' Mr. Cisneros reported 
that he has driven straight trucks for 11 years, accumulating 528,000 
miles, and tractor-trailer combinations for four years, accumulating 
300,000 miles. He holds a Class A CDL from California. His driving 
record for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for 
moving violations in a CMV.

Justin D. Craft

    Mr. Craft, 57, has corneal scarring in his left eye due to a 
traumatic incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 
20/20, and in his left eye, light perception. Following an examination 
in 2017, his optometrist stated, ``Mr. Craft has sufficient vision to 
perform driving tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.'' Mr. 
Craft reported that he has driven straight trucks for 16 years, 
accumulating 400,000 miles. He holds an operator's license from 
Arkansas. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes 
and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV.

James E. Haener

    Mr. Haener, 66, has a corneal scar in his right eye due to a 
traumatic incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 
hand motion, and in his left eye, 20/20. Following an examination in 
2017, his optometrist stated, ``In my medical opinion, James Haener has 
sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks required to operate a 
commercial vehicle.'' Mr. Haener reported that he has driven straight 
trucks for 45 years, accumulating 225,000 miles, and tractor-trailer 
combinations for 45 years, accumulating 225,000 miles. He holds a Class 
A CDL from Idaho. His driving record for the last three years shows no 
crashes and no convictions for moving violations in a CMV.

Curvin L. Martin

    Mr. Martin, 40, has had amblyopia in his right eye since childhood. 
The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/70, and in his left eye, 20/
20. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ``In my 
opinion, Mr. Martin has sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks 
required to operate a commercial vehicle.'' Mr. Martin reported that he 
has driven tractor-trailer combinations for 19 years, accumulating 1.9 
million miles. He holds a Class A CDL from Pennsylvania. His driving 
record for the last three years shows no crashes and one conviction for 
a moving violation in a CMV; he disregarded a traffic lane.

Robert L. Redding

    Mr. Redding, 54, has aphakia in his left eye due to a traumatic 
incident in childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and 
in his left eye, 20/800. Following an examination in 2017, his 
optometrist stated, ``Please let this letter serve as notice that Mr. 
Redding does have sufficient vision to perform the driving tasks 
required to operate a commercial motor vehicle.'' Mr. Redding reported 
that he has driven straight trucks for 21 years, accumulating 315,000 
miles. He holds a Class B CDL from North Carolina. His driving record 
for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving 
violations in a CMV.

Gerald L. Wheeler

    Mr. Wheeler, 54, has had amblyopia in his left eye since childhood. 
The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left eye, 20/
200. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist stated, ``Mr. 
Wheeler has, in my opinion, sufficient vision to perform the driving 
tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.'' Mr. Wheeler reported 
that he has driven straight trucks for 15 years, accumulating 300,000 
miles. He holds an operator's license from Florida. His driving record 
for the last three years shows no crashes and no convictions for moving 
violations in a CMV.

George J. Worthington, Jr.

    Mr. Worthington, 58, has had amblyopia in his left eye since 
childhood. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his left 
eye, 20/200. Following an examination in 2017, his ophthalmologist 
stated, ``His ability to operate a commercial motor vehicle should not 
be limited due to his long-standing amblyopia of the left eye.'' Mr. 
Worthington reported that he has driven straight trucks for 30 years, 
accumulating 300,000 miles. He holds an operator's license from New 
York. His driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and 
no convictions for moving violations in a CMV.

Jonas L. Yoder

    Mr. Yoder, 57, has had a branch retinal vein occlusion in his left 
eye since 1995. The visual acuity in his right eye is 20/20, and in his 
left eye, 20/200. Following an examination in 2017, his optometrist 
stated, ``Despite the vision deficiency of the left eye, it is my 
professional medical opinion that Jonas has sufficient vision to 
perform the driving tasks required to operate a commercial vehicle.'' 
Mr. Yoder reported that he has driven straight trucks for five years, 
accumulating 400,000 miles. He holds a Class B CDL from Nebraska. His 
driving record for the last three years shows no crashes and no 
convictions for moving violations in a CMV.

III. 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 and material 
received before the close of business on the closing date indicated in 
the dates section of the notice.

IV. 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-2018-0006 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 materials received during the 
comment period. FMCSA may issue a final determination at any time after 
the close of the comment period.

V. Viewing Comments and Documents

    To view comments, as well as any documents mentioned in this 
preamble, go to http://www.regulations.gov and in the search box insert 
the docket number FMCSA-2018-0006 and click ``Search.''

[[Page 6697]]

Next, click ``Open Docket Folder'' and you will find all documents and 
comments related to this notice.

    Issued on: February 7, 2018.
Larry W. Minor,
Associate Administrator for Policy.
[FR Doc. 2018-03064 Filed 2-13-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P