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Doctors suggest testing truckers for sleep apnea

Posted: August 1, 2014

WASHINGTON — American medical experts have recommended to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that obese truck drivers be tested routinely for sleep apnea.

According to Landline, the publication of the Owner-operator Independent Drivers Association, the FMCSA’s Medical Review Board concluded this week that all CDL holders with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater should be checked.

However, some board members felt the BMI issue warranted more investigation.

BMI combines a person’s height and weight to set a score. An adult’s BMI can be calculated by dividing the person’s weight in pounds by inches squared and multiplying that number by 703. Any number over 30 indicates obesity, according to the BMI system.

Transportation officials have not set any timetable for consideration of any regulation related to apnea, and FMCSA told Land Line.

However, OOIDA — which opposes mandatory sleep testing — says that the medical board carries significant weight when it comes to regulatory changes.

The MRB is composed of five leading scholarly physicians. MRB members specialize in the areas most relevant to the bus and truck driver population.

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