Heavy Duty Trucking

DEC 2014

The Fleet Business Authority

Issue link: https://heavydutytrucking.epubxp.com/i/432752

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Page 22 of 103

The decision by MCSAC to accept the board's recommendation was not unanimous, however. Trucking interests, including American Truck- ing Associations, were outvoted by the majority. Rob Abbott, vice president of safety policy at ATA, said he is con- cerned that the questionnaire might encourage examiners to decline certification for drivers using these medications. The requirement for the examiner to say if the medication would harm the driver's performance gives the examiner "everything to lose and nothing to gain" by saying the driver is qualified. Circle 130 on Reader Action Card "So it seems like the default answer for many of them will be, well, there's some level of impairment there so he can't drive," Abbott said. "That's concerning." He also worries that the question- naire could push drivers toward not taking medications that they need. "I think we have to ask those ques- tions a little more carefully." Abbott welcomed the possibil- ity of a rulemaking on the question of whether or not drivers should be able to work while on Schedule II medications. "A rulemaking would require that we put to the test the notion that there is a need, a real-world safety benefit," he said. "If we're confident that there is a problem and this will solve it then it's appropriate that we take that step." ■ www.truckinginfo.com DECEMBER 2014 • HDT 19 Drivers who take narcotic pain relievers and prescriptions for attention deficit disorder could have a harder time getting their medical card. PHOTO: ©ISTOCKPHOTO.COM/STEVECOLEIMAGES

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