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Blog, Safety Tips, Uncategorized

Driving While Sick, Why You May Be Distracted or Impaired


By Matthew James Earle~

The flu season has struck, and with 31.6 percent more force than last year. We’ve all probably by now have been in contact with someone who has been sick, whether it be a loved one, friend, or a co-worker. If you are unfortunately stricken with the flu this season here are a few things to consider before getting on the road:

Are you alert enough to drive?

Is your head fully with you? Make sure you aren’t drowsy, dazed or confused. People who drive with a cold or flu tend to think about their affliction more than driving; you want to be able to have your full mind on the road. If you’ve got a major headache or a fever, staying off the road would be a good idea!

sick with cold compress

How sick are you?

Depending on how bad your symptoms are you should try not to drive. Compare your condition to days in which you are relatively normal feeling, to your sick conditions. Sometimes it’s not as easy as waking up and feeling horrible to realize you should probably just stay in bed. Excessive coughing, sneezing, and reaching for tissues in the car are just another form of distracted driving.

Are you on any drugs?

Obviously you can’t be driving impaired. Check the labels on prescription drugs or cold medicines, or if they are prescription, make sure to check with your doctor for their opinion on side effects. Driving while sick is already as bad as driving impaired.

Are you in denial?

If you think you may be sick, and you also think it’s not that bad, just keep in mind you may be in a state of denial. The flu may have an effect on you that makes you think you’re feeling well enough to go out — but that may just be a myth.


Here’s a graph on the increase of the flu Google searches against last year. It is in a direct relation to increases in the real world.

As always, I invite you to comment and share your input on driving while sick. Do you think it’s OK  Do you notice differences in your driving ability? I await discussion!

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, here, and everywhere else to keep up to date with the latest tips and advice for keeping you safe on the road!


About Matthew James Earle

Currently, I'm the Marketing Coordinator at DriveWise head office in Barrie. Here's a bit about me: I'm a graduate of Advertising at Sheridan College where I learned about the many sectors of the advertising industry including; integrated marketing communications, sales, media, advertising planning & preparation, interactive marketing, and ad layout and copy. Follow me on Twitter: @_MatthewEarle



  1. Pingback: How We Should Prepare Ourselves & Our Vehicles For Winter | DriveWise Road Safety - October 15, 2013

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