Medical Conditions Cause Two Accidents in Middle Tennessee This Week
Two separate accidents this week may have been caused by drivers suffering sudden medical emergencies while behind the wheel.
According to a report by WKRN.com, the first accident occurred at around 6 a.m. Monday on Highway 70 South in Nashville between the communities of Belle Meade and Bellevue. When emergency responders approached the vehicle to check on the driver of the vehicle that crashed, they found her to be unresponsive. She was later pronounced dead.
An investigation revealed that the woman may have suffered a sudden medical event while she was driving, which caused her vehicle to careen across two lanes of traffic before it struck a guardrail.
A second accident occurred in the Donelson area of Nashville just before 1 a.m. Thursday on Acorn Drive when a 64-year-old woman lost control of her vehicle and struck a concrete culvert. Police say that she had just left her workplace on Massman Drive only minutes before the crash occurred.
WSMV.com reports that she was transported to Summit Medical Center and was later pronounced dead. After their initial investigation, police ruled out drugs and alcohol and say that the crash may have been caused by a medical emergency.
What Health Conditions Make Driving More Dangerous?
Although driving is a necessary part of everyday life for most people, many drivers may ultimately become unable to drive safely due to medical issues or physical ailments. Driving requires clear vision, good hearing, and the ability to make quick decisions and judgments.
Some of the most common health conditions that can make driving more dangerous include:
- A history of epilepsy or strokes
Any medical condition that results in a sudden and partial or complete loss of consciousness or control over fine motor skills and muscle groups can cause drivers to be a significant risk factor for accidents. Drivers with a history of seizures or epilepsy and drivers who have had strokes should avoid getting behind the wheel.
- Visual and auditory impairments
Safe driving requires the ability to see clearly at distances that are both near and far. Drivers need to be able to quickly and accurately see nearby vehicles and read their speedometers to determine how fast they’re going, and they also need to be able to scan the roadway ahead to judge the movements of other vehicles and begin making plans to turn or change lanes. Conditions that result in visual difficulties and impairments, such as cataracts, macular degeneration, or glaucoma, can make driving dangerous.
- Conditions that require medications that interfere with driving ability
Prescription medications can help manage the symptoms of many chronic and acute illnesses, but they can also have profound impacts on a person’s ability to drive. Anyone who takes a medication that results in drowsiness, loss of inhibition, reduced decision-making abilities, or fatigue should avoid driving.
- Dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, or traumatic brain injuries
Driving is a highly complex task that requires attention to detail, planning, and quick reactions. People who suffer from cognitive impairments due to dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, or traumatic brain injuries may be unable to drive safely due to the effect those conditions have on all aspects of the brain involved in coordination, memory, and decision-making.
Always consult a doctor if you’re concerned about your ability or a family member’s ability to safely drive a vehicle. Even minor medical conditions can make driving more difficult, especially when you’re behind the wheel for long periods of time.
At Matt Hardin Law, our Nashville auto accident attorneys know that car accidents can have a wide variety of causes, including sudden medical emergencies. However, the majority of accidents are caused by driver error and even negligence. If you or someone you know was hurt in an accident that was caused by a careless driver, you may be eligible to pursue a claim for compensation.
Get in touch with our legal team today by dialing (615) 200-1111 or completing a free online consultation form to find out how we can put our 20 years of combined experience to work for you and your family.