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Individual medical assessments for HGV drivers begin in October

By: Joe Elvin
18 July 2011

Individual medical assessments for HGV drivers are set to begin this October.

It is thought the announcement made by transport minister Mike Penning last Tuesday could pave the way for those with diabetes, epilepsy or visual impairments to be allowed to apply for driving jobs.

It has been 21 years since a law was put in place which banned anyone with diabetes from driving heavy goods vehicles.  

However, during a Westminster Hall debate, Penning said that diabetics can apply for their license to be returned if they pass the assessments.

Discussing the subject on hgvlgvtraining.co.uk, Penning claimed that treatment had advanced to the point where these rules should be reconsidered.

He said: "We have taken expert advice on the latest evidence on eyesight, epilepsy and diabetes and believe these proposals strike the right balance in allowing as many people as possible to drive, without compromising safety."

It is thought it may take a bit longer to allow those with epilepsy and visual impairments into logistics work because of complex EU medical issues.

Roadtransport.com reports that over 240 diabetic HGV drivers have had their licence revoked in the last three years. An additional 277 drivers lost their licence due to be diagnosed with epilepsy during the same period.

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