First of three sleep apnea listening sessions on tap

By Mark Schremmer, Land Line staff writer | 5/11/2016

The first of three public listening sessions about obstructive sleep apnea will be Thursday, May 12, in Washington, D.C.

On March 10, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and Federal Railroad Administration published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking to receive feedback about any potential sleep apnea regulations. The 90-day comment period ends June 8.

There will also be listening sessions May 17 in Chicago and May 25 in Los Angeles.

According to the Department of Transportation, the purpose of the listening sessions is to “solicit information on the prevalence of moderate-to-severe obstructive sleep apnea among individuals occupying safety sensitive positions in highway and rail transportation. The FMCSA and FRA also request information on potential costs and benefits from possible regulatory actions that address the safety risks associated with motor carrier and rail transportation workers in safety sensitive positions who have obstructive sleep apnea.”

Through the listening sessions, interested parties will have an opportunity to share their views and any data or analysis regarding sleep apnea with representatives of the FMCSA and FRA. The Agencies will transcribe all comments and place the transcripts in the dockets FMCSA-2015-0419 and FRA-2015-0111.

The Washington, D.C., listening session will take place from 10 a.m. to noon and 1:30-3:30 p.m. EST at the National Association of Home Builders at 1201 15th St.

For those who are unable to attend in person, the entire proceedings of all three meetings will be available on the internet through a live webcast, which can be found by clicking here.

Written comments regarding possible sleep apnea requirements can be submitted at the website or by mailing Docket Services, U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE, Washington, D.C. 20590-0001. You are asked to identify whether you are in the transportation industry or medical profession, but you can choose to remain anonymous.

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