Thousands of road users are seriously injured or killed each year in North Carolina and around the country in traffic accidents caused by fatigued motorists. This type of crash can be particularly dangerous when the tired driver is behind the wheel of a semi-tractor trailer. This is why the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has proposed a rule that would require commercial truck drivers to be tested for obstructive sleep apnea.
Earlier this year, the public was invited to submit comments about the proposed regulation. Many of the 593 responses received focused on the cost of taking an obstructive sleep apnea test. Some respondents said that sleep apnea tests are notoriously difficult to pass and requiring truck drivers to take them would do little to make the nation's roads safer. Others accepted that the tests could improve road safety but were concerned about truck drivers being forced to pay for testing out of their own pockets.