We take it for granted that we can jump into our family sedan and automatically become a good driver. The fact is, the majority of us can not drive to save ourselves. We don’t understand the significant relationship between superior health and driver safety. For instance, like a drug, fatigue behind the wheel can kill you. The knowledgeable motorist will check his physical condition before taking the wheel.
Driving a car can make demands on a driver. He/She must be in just as good health as the automobile. Now, don’t worry, you don’t have to have a body like Vin Diesel in “Fast Five”. But, a minimum standard of well-being in body and mind is essential. If you are thinking of driving 200 miles and the car is a bit dodgy, you might say, “well, not sure if the car will make it, the steering’s been a bit shaky lately”. On the other hand, if YOU were in the same condition as the car, you would not think twice about getting behind the wheel.
If you are tired, upset, got a headache or the flu, and dosed up with antihistamines or tranquilizers, then you are a mobile timebomb! You are an accident waiting to happen! You have put your driving skills to the ultimate test and you’re gonna lose!
But, if you enjoy a state of good health with a clear vision and you can buckle your seatbelt by yourself, then the threat on the road to yourself, your passengers, and other motorists are greatly diminished. Not many of us collapse at the wheel because of a killer disease, but the threat to road safety from minor complaints is something very real and we must be judgmental enough to be able to calculate our condition.
The requirement by law as far as fitness is concerned is only that you can read the 6-inch letters at the end of the office and can fill out the application form. It is entirely our responsibility to assess our health as we would the road-worthiness of our car.
Now, here is a general rule of how to combat a sudden illness while driving:
- Heart Attack – if you should ever be unlucky or unhealthy enough or just plain too old to drive, and have a heart attack while driving, generally you are not going to die straight away! Pullover to the side of the road and don’t drive for 3 months.
- Migraine – if you feel a migraine coming on while driving, symptoms can be nausea and double vision, then stop immediately. Take off your leather driving gloves, sit down on the grass verge in the lotus position, and practice deep meditation with forefingers and thumbs touching.
- Anxiety Attack – if you feel an anxiety attack coming on while driving, you may suffer from memory loss, so pull over immediately and make sure you have recorded your trip on your SatNav because you will have forgotten where you came from.
- Schizophrenic Attack or other Psychosis – if you about to have a psychotic episode while driving, pull over immediately and tell your mother-in-law to hide all the picnic cutlery.
- Alcohol & Drug Dependency – if you think that going for a nice long drive in the countryside is the best treatment for your self-imposed, cold turkey, substance abuse, withdrawal program, then you’re wrong! Tell your wife to take over the driving, get in the back seat, crack a few beers, and read some magazines.
The object of this article is to give you food for thought. Eat good healthy food, drive safely, and enjoy the machine that has brought us so much joy in the pleasurable pursuit of going somewhere!