Tiger Woods’ arrest highlights dangers of driving on prescription meds

A woman sitting behind the wheel of a car taking medication from a prescription bottle

Although one can feel badly for Tiger Woods’ impaired driving arrest on Memorial Day, the incident highlights a very important issue – the dangers of driving while taking prescription medications. It can be as deadly as drunk driving, endangering everyone on the road.

Whether you believe Woods or not, I do know from my personal injury law practice that a lot of car crashes have occurred because the at-fault driver was taking prescription meds.

Woods asserts he was taking four painkillers because of recent back surgery, one of them Vicodin, an opioid. The FDA warns that this drug “may impair the mental and/or physical abilities required for the performance of potentially hazardous tasks such as driving a car or operating machinery; patients should be cautioned accordingly.”

We can say that Woods should have known that. He should have. But the problem is bigger than one celebrity. More and more people are driving on both legal and illegal drugs, making it a bigger threat to public safety than drunk driving.

Drugs found in more fatalities than alcohol

According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), and the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility (FAAR), in 2015, both legal and illegal drugs were found in the bodies of fatally injured drivers forty-three percent of the time! That’s an incredibly high percentage. Alcohol was shown to be found in the bloodstream of 37 percent of the fatalities.

Ten years ago, the numbers were significantly different; alcohol was found in 41 percent of fatalities and drugs in 28 percent. Distilled, drug-impaired driving has nearly doubled and has surpassed driving while intoxicated.

In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the increase in traffic incidents involving drugged driving coincides with the rising tide of drug overdose deaths, which was 2½ times higher in 2015 than in 1999.

Don’t drive if you don’t know how your meds affect you!

So many drivers do not realize that the medicines they are taking (even cold medicines) can impair driving. However, ignorance is no excuse in the eyes of the law. If you are driving drugged, it doesn’t matter that you have a legal prescription from your physician. You are responsible for knowing whether you should or should not be driving while taking it.

Please educate yourselves about the prescription and over-the-counter drugs you are taking. It will help keep you and others safe on our roadways.

Please, be safe out there!

I would appreciate it if you would share this post so that others can benefit from the information. Thank you.

If you have any questions about this article or any area of personal injury law, please refer to the contact info below.

Also, if you are interested, please read my other personal injury articles at http://blog.petermillerlaw.com.

Contact Information:

The Law Offices of Peter Miller

1601 S. Broadway

Little Rock, AR 72206

Phone: 501-374-6300

Email:    pmiller@petermillerlaw.com

Website: http://www.petermillerlaw.com

 

The content of this blog was prepared by Law Office of Peter Miller, P.A. for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or provide legal advice. Laws differ by jurisdiction, and the information in this blog may not apply to you. You should seek the assistance of an attorney licensed to practice in your state before taking any action. Using this blog site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Law Office of Peter Miller, P.A. Attorney-client relationships can only be created by written contract.

 

Attribution: Royal Air Force Mildenhall/Official US Air Force Website/Creative Commons Attribution 2.0

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