Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders, 2319-2320 [2019-01275]

Download as PDF amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 25 / Wednesday, February 6, 2019 / Notices 49 CFR 391.41(b)(11) was adopted in 1970, with a revision in 1971 to allow drivers to be qualified under this standard while wearing a hearing aid, 35 FR 6458, 6463 (April 22, 1970) and 36 FR 12857 (July 3, 1971). DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION III. Discussion of Comments FMCSA received two comments in this preceding. Kyle Guimarin agrees with the decision of renewing the 11 people, allowing them to drive a CMV in interstate commerce. Davis Benton also agrees with FMCSA’s decision to renew the 11 people, exempting them from the hearing requirements required to operate a vehicle in interstate commerce. Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders IV. Conclusion Based upon its evaluation of the 11 renewal exemption applications and comments received, FMCSA announces its decision to exempt the following drivers from the hearing requirement in 49 CFR 391.41 (b)(11). As of September 6, 2018, and in accordance with 49 U.S.C. 31136(e) and 31315, the following 11 individuals have satisfied the renewal conditions for obtaining an exemption from the hearing requirement in the FMCSRs for interstate CMV drivers (83 FR 56905). Pricilla Brackenridge, (IL) Gary Cordano, (NV) Renaldo Martinez, (TX) Michael Smith, (CO) David Chappelear, (TX) Samuel Fennell, (OH) Katrina Parker, (NJ) Michael Sweet, (GA) Mathias Conway, (MI) Richard Hoots, (AR D’Neille Smith, (OH) The drivers were included in docket number FMCSA–2016–0002. Their exemptions are applicable as of September 6, 2018, and will expire on September 6, 2020. In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 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 and 31315. Issued on: January 30, 2019. Larry W. Minor, Associate Administrator for Policy. [FR Doc. 2019–01261 Filed 2–5–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:09 Feb 05, 2019 Jkt 247001 Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration I. Public Participation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of applications for exemption; request for comments. AGENCY: FMCSA announces receipt of applications from three individuals for an exemption from the prohibition in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) 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 control a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) to drive in interstate commerce. If granted, the exemptions would enable these individuals who have had one or more seizures and are taking anti-seizure medication to operate CMVs in interstate commerce. DATES: Comments must be received on or before March 8, 2019. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Docket No. FMCSA–2018–0058 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., ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays. • Fax: 1–202–493–2251. To avoid duplication, please use only one of these four methods. See the ‘‘Public Participation’’ portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for instructions on submitting comments. 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 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. If you have questions PO 00000 Frm 00181 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 regarding viewing or submitting material to the docket, contact Docket Services, telephone (202) 366–9826. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: [Docket No. FMCSA–2018–0058] SUMMARY: 2319 A. Submitting Comments If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this notice (Docket No. FMCSA–2018–0058), indicate the specific section of this document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for each suggestion or recommendation. 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, put the docket number, FMCSA–2018–0058, in the keyword box, and click ‘‘Search.’’ When the new screen appears, click on the ‘‘Comment Now!’’ button and type your comment into the text box on the following screen. Choose whether you are submitting your comment as an individual or on behalf of a third party and then submit. 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, self-addressed postcard or envelope. FMCSA will consider all comments and material received during the comment period. B. 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–2018–0058, 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 may view the docket online by visiting the Docket Management Facility 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. E:\FR\FM\06FEN1.SGM 06FEN1 2320 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 25 / Wednesday, February 6, 2019 / Notices C. 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.dot.gov/privacy. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 II. 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 three individuals listed in this notice have requested an exemption from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(8). 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 statute. The physical qualification standard for drivers regarding epilepsy found in 49 CFR 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. [49 CFR part 391, APPENDIX A TO PART 391—MEDICAL ADVISORY CRITERIA, section H. Epilepsy: § 391.41(b)(8), paragraphs 3, 4, and 5.] The advisory criteria states the following: 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 1 See http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?SID= e47b48a9ea42dd67d999246e23d97970&mc=true& node=pt49.5.391&rgn=div5#ap49.5.391_171.a and https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-2015-title49vol5/pdf/CFR-2015-title49-vol5-part391-appA.pdf. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:09 Feb 05, 2019 Jkt 247001 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 sixmonth 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 antiseizure 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 five-year period or more. As a result of Medical Examiners misinterpreting advisory criteria as regulation, numerous drivers have been prohibited from operating a CMV 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 based on the physical qualification standards and medical best practices. On January 15, 2013, FMCSA announced in a Notice of Final Disposition titled, Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders, (78 FR 3069), its decision to grant requests from 22 individuals for exemptions from the regulatory requirement that interstate 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.’’ Since the January 15, 2013 notice, the Agency has published additional notices granting requests from individuals for exemptions from the regulatory requirement regarding epilepsy found in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(8). PO 00000 Frm 00182 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 To be considered for an exemption from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(8), applicants must meet the criteria in the 2007 recommendations of the Agency’s Medical Expert Panel (MEP) (78 FR 3069). III. Qualifications of Applicants Christopher M. Dowling Mr. Dowling is a 39-year-old class A CDL holder in Indiana. He has a history of a seizure disorder and has been seizure free since 2006. He takes antiseizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining the same since April 2016. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Dowling receiving an exemption. Robert Drake Mr. Drake is a 46-year-old class D driver in Arizona. He has a history of epilepsy and has been seizure free since 2010. He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining the same since 2007. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Brown receiving an exemption. Daniel H. Threatt Mr. Threatt is a 21-year-old class C driver in North Carolina. He has a history of epilepsy and has been seizure free since 2009. His anti-seizure medication was discontinued in 2010. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. Threatt receiving an exemption. IV. 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. Issued on: January 30, 2019. Larry W. Minor, Associate Administrator for Policy. [FR Doc. 2019–01275 Filed 2–5–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–EX–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration [Docket No. FMCSA–2019–0003] Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Vision Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of denials. AGENCY: E:\FR\FM\06FEN1.SGM 06FEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 25 (Wednesday, February 6, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 2319-2320]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-01275]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

[Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0058]


Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Epilepsy and 
Seizure Disorders

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

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

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

SUMMARY: FMCSA announces receipt of applications from three individuals 
for an exemption from the prohibition in the Federal Motor Carrier 
Safety Regulations (FMCSRs) 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 control a commercial motor 
vehicle (CMV) to drive in interstate commerce. If granted, the 
exemptions would enable these individuals who have had one or more 
seizures and are taking anti-seizure medication to operate CMVs in 
interstate commerce.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before March 8, 2019.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by the Federal Docket 
Management System (FDMS) Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0058 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., 
ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays.
     Fax: 1-202-493-2251.
    To avoid duplication, please use only one of these four methods. 
See the ``Public Participation'' portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY 
INFORMATION section for instructions on submitting comments.

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 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 
Services, telephone (202) 366-9826.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Public Participation

A. Submitting Comments

    If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this 
notice (Docket No. FMCSA-2018-0058), indicate the specific section of 
this document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for 
each suggestion or recommendation. 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, 
put the docket number, FMCSA-2018-0058, in the keyword box, and click 
``Search.'' When the new screen appears, click on the ``Comment Now!'' 
button and type your comment into the text box on the following screen. 
Choose whether you are submitting your comment as an individual or on 
behalf of a third party and then submit.
    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.
    FMCSA will consider all comments and material received during the 
comment period.

B. 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-2018-0058, 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 may view the docket online by visiting the Docket 
Management Facility 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.

[[Page 2320]]

C. 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.dot.gov/privacy.

II. 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 three individuals listed in this notice have requested an 
exemption from the epilepsy and seizure disorders prohibition in 49 CFR 
391.41(b)(8). 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 statute.
    The physical qualification standard for drivers regarding epilepsy 
found in 49 CFR 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. [49 CFR part 391, APPENDIX A TO PART 391--MEDICAL 
ADVISORY CRITERIA, section H. Epilepsy: Sec.  391.41(b)(8), paragraphs 
3, 4, and 5.]
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ See http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?SID=e47b48a9ea42dd67d999246e23d97970&mc=true&node=pt49.5.391&rgn=div5#ap49.5.391_171.a and https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-2015-title49-vol5/pdf/CFR-2015-title49-vol5-part391-appA.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The advisory criteria states the following:
    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 six-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 five-
year period or more.
    As a result of Medical Examiners misinterpreting advisory criteria 
as regulation, numerous drivers have been prohibited from operating a 
CMV 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 based on the physical qualification standards and medical best 
practices.
    On January 15, 2013, FMCSA announced in a Notice of Final 
Disposition titled, Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; 
Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders, (78 FR 3069), its decision to grant 
requests from 22 individuals for exemptions from the regulatory 
requirement that interstate 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.'' Since the January 15, 2013 notice, the Agency has 
published additional notices granting requests from individuals for 
exemptions from the regulatory requirement regarding epilepsy found in 
49 CFR 391.41(b)(8).
    To be considered for an exemption from the epilepsy and seizure 
disorders prohibition in 49 CFR 391.41(b)(8), applicants must meet the 
criteria in the 2007 recommendations of the Agency's Medical Expert 
Panel (MEP) (78 FR 3069).

III. Qualifications of Applicants

Christopher M. Dowling

    Mr. Dowling is a 39-year-old class A CDL holder in Indiana. He has 
a history of a seizure disorder and has been seizure free since 2006. 
He takes anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency 
remaining the same since April 2016. His physician states that he is 
supportive of Mr. Dowling receiving an exemption.

Robert Drake

    Mr. Drake is a 46-year-old class D driver in Arizona. He has a 
history of epilepsy and has been seizure free since 2010. He takes 
anti-seizure medication with the dosage and frequency remaining the 
same since 2007. His physician states that he is supportive of Mr. 
Brown receiving an exemption.

Daniel H. Threatt

    Mr. Threatt is a 21-year-old class C driver in North Carolina. He 
has a history of epilepsy and has been seizure free since 2009. His 
anti-seizure medication was discontinued in 2010. His physician states 
that he is supportive of Mr. Threatt receiving an exemption.

IV. 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.

    Issued on: January 30, 2019.
Larry W. Minor,
Associate Administrator for Policy.
[FR Doc. 2019-01275 Filed 2-5-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P