The quick actions of a Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper helped save the life of a man who was experiencing a medical emergency behind the wheel.
Per a report by WKRN.com, the THP trooper was driving home at the end of his shift on Highway 64 near Pulaski Highway in Giles County when he saw a vehicle driving erratically.
Thinking that the driver may be intoxicated, the trooper initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle. When he approached the driver, the trooper discovered that he was slurring his words and sweating. The driver told the trooper that he was trying drive home to Pulaski, Tennessee, but he was heading in the wrong direction.
At that point, the trooper noticed medical equipment in the driver’s vehicle. That caused the trooper to suspect that the driver was having a medical emergency and wasn’t intoxicated. He called paramedics to the scene, and after evaluating the driver, they determined that he was diabetic and that his blood sugar was at a dangerous level.
The THP released a statement after the incident congratulating the trooper and saying that a medical-related crash may have been imminent without the driver receiving medical intervention.
Be Careful While Driving if You Have these Medical Conditions
Safe driving requires uninterrupted focus and attention on the roadway. Just as drinking alcohol, using certain types of drugs, or sending and receiving text messages can all disrupt your focus and ability to safely control your vehicle, so too can certain medical conditions.
If you or someone you know suffers from these conditions, it’s important to speak with your doctor about whether it’s safe to drive or if you need to take any extra precautions:
People with epilepsy are susceptible to experiencing seizures. They may lose muscular control, awareness, or consciousness while having seizures. Because of the extreme risks associated with driving with this condition, some people with epilepsy shouldn’t get behind the wheel unless their condition is well-controlled with medication and they get approval from their doctor.
- Hearing and vision loss
People who suffer from significant hearing and vision loss that isn’t correctable are at a higher risk of being involved in accidents than people with normal visual and auditory acuity. Driving requires being able to clearly see the movements of other vehicles up close and at a distance, as well as the ability to read street signs and hear other vehicles.
People who have narcolepsy may experience sudden sleepiness and drowsiness without warning at any point during the day, regardless of how much sleep they got the night before. Doctors recommend that people with narcolepsy pull their vehicles over immediately if they begin to feel sleepy, as they may be unable to stop themselves from falling asleep. People with severe cases may want to consider alternative arrangements, such as using public transportation.
Whether it’s caused by a medical condition or a medication, fainting is a common symptom of certain diseases and treatments. If you’re experiencing fainting—also known as syncope—it’s important to avoid driving until the condition is treated, the medication is better tolerated, or you’re allowed to discontinue usage.
Any medical condition or medication that can interfere with your ability to drive safely should never be taken lightly, even if the risks of having adverse effects while behind the wheel are remote. Whether you’ve just been diagnosed with a condition or you were just prescribed new medication, ask your doctor about the steps you need to take to continue driving safely. In some cases, simply being aware of your symptoms can help you decrease your chances of being involved in an accident.
Matt Hardin Law’s team of Nashville auto accident attorneys is dedicated to fighting for the rights of injured victims throughout the mid-state area. If you or someone you know was injured in a crash that wasn’t your fault, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation. Get in touch with our legal team today by dialing (615) 200-1111 or completing a free online consultation form.