Driving on drugs campaign launches to inform America
National Safety Council (NSC) has launched a Public Service
Campaign to educate Americans about the hazards of Drug-Impaired
Driving. The public service announcements describe the dangers
of driving while impaired by many common prescription and
over-the-counter drugs, such as some antihistamines and
from alcohol and illegal drugs is a leading cause of car
crashes, but impairment can also be caused by many common
prescription and over-the-counter medications," said
Alan McMillan, NSC President. "Some medications, such
as some antihistamines used to treat allergies and anti-anxiety
medications, may affect driving skills by inducing drowsiness
or excitability or by altering reaction times. Other medications,
including some cold and cough medications, sleeping pills
and painkillers, can also impair driving skills."
said the announcements would address some of the signs and
symptoms of impairment, such as drowsiness, excitability,
altered reaction times and altered depth perception. "The
effects of impairment vary with each person, but can generally
be defined as a change in a person's ability to perform
routine daily tasks at the normal level of functioning,"
McMillan said. "Impairment can affect driving ability,
among other things, but changes can often be difficult to
identify. In fact, people may be drug impaired and not realize
said that Americans could protect themselves and others
from driving while impaired by following these tips:
to your healthcare provider or pharmacist to learn the
side effects of any medications you're taking.
Carefully read the directions and warning labels of all
Ask your healthcare provider about non-impairing alternatives.
take more than the recommended dose.
5. Don't mix medications without first checking with healthcare
provider or pharmacist.
6. Don't mix alcohol with medication.
offered this additional advice: "If you are taking
pre-scription or over-the-counter medications, talk to your
health-care provider or pharmacist about non-impairing alternatives,"
he said. "Each of us has a personal responsibility
to keep ourselves and others safe on the roads."
Safety Council is a nonprofit, nongovernmental, international
public service organization dedicated to protecting life
and promoting health. Members of NSC include more than 45,000
businesses, labor organizations, schools, public agencies,
private groups and individuals. Founded in 1913, and chartered
by the U.S. Congress in 1953, the primary focus of the NSC
is preventing injuries that occur in workplaces, homes,
communities and motor vehicles. For more information about
the NSC, visit the website at www.nsc.org
or contact your local NSC chapter.