New Regulations Allow Drivers with Diabetes to Operate Commercial Motor VehiclesNovember 2, 2018
In September, the US Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced that drivers with a stable insulin regimen, or properly controlled insulin-treated diabetes mellitus (ITDM), are now permitted to operate commercial motor vehicles in interstate commerce.
This gives individuals with diabetes the opportunity to earn a decent living driving a truck, while ensuring that truck drivers meet the required FMCSA physical qualification standards. Ultimately, this final rule will provide a range of benefits, including financial, administrative, and health-related.
Prior to this recent ruling, if an individual had ITDM, he or she would be prohibited from driving a commercial truck, unless they were able to obtain an exemption from the FMCSA. For many individuals suffering from ITDM, this made it difficult to find a job that offered a good salary and health benefits.
The exemption process could be time-consuming, and there was no guarantee that the applicant would receive an exemption. With this new rule, truck drivers no longer need to obtain and renew the exemption.
A Medical Professional Will Monitor Drivers’ Diabetes
Once an individual is hired to operate a commercial truck, a certified medical examiner (ME) will provide the driver with a Medical Examiner’s Certificate that will be valid for up to 12 months. The healthcare professional who manages the driver’s diabetes, and prescribes the insulin to manage the disease, provides the ITDM assessment for the ME certification. The assessment will confirm that the individual successfully manages his or her disease and maintains a stable insulin regimen.
Going forward, the certified ME will be responsible for making sure that the driver meets the FMCSA’s requirements, and can safely operate a commercial truck.
According to an FMCSA administrator, the final rule is a win-win for all parties, because it saves money and streamlines the process while also prioritizing the individuals’ health. It eliminates the exemption program, saving the nearly 5,000 truck drivers with ITDM, that currently have exemptions, over $5 million per year, compared to the costs they had to continue to pay into the program.
This new rule also saves new ITDM exemption applicants and the motor carrier companies that they work for close to $215,000 each year.
Finally, the FMCSA will save over $1 million per year over the next three years in administrative costs related to the diabetes exemption program.
Baltimore Truck Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent All Truck Accident Victims
If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a truck accident involving a driver whose diabetes was not properly managed, you are urged to contact the Baltimore truck accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton at your earliest convenience. Protecting your rights is our top priority, and we will work tirelessly to secure the maximum financial compensation you deserve for your injuries. Our dedicated legal team will work to determine who is responsible for causing the accident, and whether the driver’s medical condition contributed to the crash. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent truck accident victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.