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US Officials drop planned sleep apnea related trucking regulations

Freight truck pulls into local gas station (KTVL/Alexander Mesadieu)

U.S. Officials are abandoning a proposed plan that would require sleep apnea screenings for truck drivers and train engineers.

The Federal Railroad Administration and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration argue that it should be up to railroad and trucking companies to decide whether to test employees.

Local trucking company, Combined Transport, says it has had drivers diagnosed with sleep apnea during their screening process.

It says being diagnosed and taking precautions increases safety for driver and for everyone else on the road.

Combined Transport also says that sleep apnea diagnosis increases truckers' personal health and happiness.

"They find that it's really changed their lives. It makes their lives much more enjoyable and focused. So that's a very good safety thing and better for their health," said Cord Rotz of Combined Transport.

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer says he will push the federal government to reconsider withdrawing from the proposed regulation.

Bud Williams, Co-owner of Aisling truck academy, a local trucking school, says that he does not agree with the written regulations, but believes that truckers should be screened for sleep apnea during the physicals that truckers have to go through as entry level drivers during trucker school.

Read the full notification here.

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