Module 8: Risk Management 02

2 min read

(The Dangers of Driving when disabled)The Dangers of Driving When Disabled It can be very dangerous and risky to drive when any of your senses are not in optimal condition. You must bear in mind that other drivers may not be in the same level of health and, therefore, you must be alert and give them special considerations. Here are some common physical disabilities and ways to overcome them:

 Physical handicap: Vision is the most important sense you can use to gather information about your driving environment and route of travel. If your eyesight does not meet the minimum standards, you are required to wear glasses or contact lenses while driving. If you have limited vision in one eye, you may be required to use extra mirrors.

 Hearing loss: Hearing is the second most important sense you have. It is with your ears that you will normally initially recognize an approaching emergency vehicle. If you have a hearing loss, you will be required to wear a hearing aid when driving. Drivers cannot wear headphones when driving, as this reduces hearing. 

Cerebral palsy / spinal injury: People with these physical problems may still be able and allowed to drive. With the help of modern technology, these people can still drive with the use of devices such as joysticks, voice-activated controls, and other vehicle modifications. 

Leg injuries: When a person loses or injures a leg, it has a serious impact on their driving. These people can still drive as well as anyone else thanks to devices like hand brakes and throttles. 

Arm injuries: The loss or injury of an arm also presents driving challenges that have been solved with prosthetics, steering wheel rings, and special dash controls and door locks.

 Neck injuries: The ability to turn your head is a crucial part of scanning your entire environment while driving. People with sprains or other neck injuries should take extra care when driving. Using larger or magnifying mirrors can help, but they are not a substitute for the extra precaution that must be taken. There are some health conditions that cannot be classified as either disease or disability, but slowly deteriorate the health of the person. These situations also require extra care and caution. These are:

  • •Aging:

As you age, your reaction time and visual acuity decrease. Make up for it with lower speeds and traveling on roads with fewer drivers. Younger drivers must be patient and courteous. Studies show that older drivers are not primarily a risk to other drivers. Older drivers are at risk because they are more likely to be killed in a collision.

  • •Chronic diseases:

Some examples are epilepsy, arthritis, diabetes, and asthma. These are controllable with medications. Be aware that medication side effects can affect your driving skills. For any disability or chronic illness, the state will require a full medical evaluation and doctor’s permission to drive.