April 23, 2024

Is it Dangerous to Drive While You Are Sick?

Get Legal Help From a Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer at the Law Firm of Anthony C. Gagliano III, P.C.

Drivers may be tempted to get behind the wheel when they are not at their physical best. While not everyone will feel 100 percent every single day, there is a time when a driver should not attempt to operate a motor vehicle. If a driver is experiencing an illness, they may be better off staying home that day. If you have been injured in a car accident with an ill driver, you should contact an experienced attorney who can help you pursue total financial compensation for your injuries.

An Illness Can Lead to Dangerous Driving

Being ill is not an excuse for a driver when they are involved in a car accident. They are expected to know when and when they should not be driving. A reasonable driver would not get behind the wheel when they are in physical distress.  Instead, they should consider staying home because they cannot focus entirely on driving. A driver not at their best may not have the judgment and reflexes to avoid dangerous situations. Their condition could cause them to feel fatigued and cause accidents. In addition, the driver could become irritated due to their illness, and they may even be more aggressive behind the wheel.

What a Driver Does When Sick Could Be Negligent?

Driving while sick is not necessarily negligence, but what the driver does when feeling under the weather could be careless. The fact that a driver could veer out of their lane and lose control of their car means that they are doing something that a reasonable driver would not do under the circumstances. Thus, you may not necessarily need to prove that the driver was Ill during the accident. However, obtaining evidence showing their condition could help you if there is a close call about liability. The only way you may even indicate that the driver was sick is based on your interaction with them at the accident scene.

The driver may think that they can take medication and still get on the road, but sometimes, the medication can be every bit as dangerous as the illness. For example, some cold and cough medications could make the driver drowsy or nauseous. Then, they could be at even higher risk of causing an accident.

Sudden Illnesses Behind the Wheel Have Special Implications

The problem is that drivers may not know they are sick and could become ill when behind the wheel. In the past, Pennsylvania had a Sudden Emergency Doctrine that kept drivers from being held responsible for damage caused in an accident when they became ill, subject to certain conditions. However, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court recently overturned that doctrine. The fact that a driver became sick is just one of the considerations that comes into play in the negligence to termination. It is still possible for a driver who suddenly falls behind the wheel to be held responsible for the damages they cause.

Get Legal Help From a Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer at the Law Firm of Anthony C. Gagliano III, P.C.

If you have been injured in a crash, a Philadelphia car accident lawyer at the law firm of Anthony C. Gagliano III, P.C. will fight for you. Call 267-861-7100 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia and King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, we serve clients in Montgomery County, Delaware County, Bucks County, Chester County, and Norristown.