REFER AN UNSAFE DRIVER
If you are concerned for the safety
of a family member, friend, or other person who can
no longer drive safely, you may write to your local
Driver Safety Office or the address given below. The
form is also available
online. Provide the persons name, birth date,
driver license number and current address, and explain
what you observed that led you to believe the person
is an unsafe driver. The letter must be signed; however,
you may request that your name be kept confidential.
Mail your letter to:
Department of Motor
Driver Safety Actions Unit M/S J234
P.O. Box 942890
Sacramento, CA 94290-0001
DMV will contact the person for a reexamination
and he or she could be suspended depending on the persons
driving record. A driving test will be given to any
person when a:
- Physician reports the person has lapses of consciousness.
- Traffic officer requests a DMV review and the
officer believes the driver is incapable of operating
a vehicle safely.
- Relative makes a good-faith report to DMV stating
the driver cannot safely operate a vehicle.
You need good vision to drive safely.
Most of what you do behind the wheel is based on what
you see. If you cannot see clearly, you cannot judge
distances or spot trouble, so you wont be able
to do something about it. You need to see out
of the corner of your eye. This lets you spot
cars creeping up on either side of you while your eyes
are on the road ahead.
You may see clearly and still not be
able to judge distances. Good distance judgment is important
to know how far you are from other cars. Many people
who may see clearly in the daytime have trouble at night.
Some see poorly in dim light. Others may have trouble
with the glare of headlights.
It is important to have your eyes checked
every year or two. You may never know about poor peripheral
vision or poor distance judgment unless your eyes are
Hearing is more important to driving
than many people realize. Your hearing can warn you
of dangerthe sound of horns, a siren, or screeching
tires. Sometimes you can hear a car that you cannot
see because it is in your blind spot.
Even people with good hearing cannot
hear well if the radio, CD, or tape deck is blaring.
While driving, dont wear a headset or earplugs
in both ears. It is against the law.
Hearing problems, like bad eyesight,
can come on so slowly that you do not notice them. Drivers
who know they are deaf or hearing-impaired can adjust.
They can learn to rely more on their seeing habits.
A right hand rear view mirror on the vehicle will help.
When you are tired, you are less alert.
The body naturally wants to sleep at night and most
drivers are less alert at night, especially after midnight.
You may not see hazards as soon or react as quickly,
so the chance of a crash is greater. If you are sleepy,
the only safe cure is to get off the road and get some
To keep from getting tired on a long
- Get a lot of rest before you startat least
a normal nights sleep.
- Dont take any drugs that can make you drowsyeven
the night before you start.
- Dont drive long hours. Driving straight through
can be dangerous if you are tired and sleepy.
- Try not to drive late at night. Your body is used
to going to sleep at that time.
- Take regular rest stops, even if you are not tired.
- Keep shifting your eyes from one part of the road
to another. Look at objects near and far, left and
- Try chewing gum or singing along with the radio.
- Roll your window down and get some fresh air in
- If you are tired all the time and fall asleep often
during the day, you should have your physician check
for a sleep disorder.
It is important to remember that all
medications, prescription and over-the-counter, are
Over-the-counter medicines that you
take for colds and allergies can make you drowsy and
affect your driving ability. Carefully read and follow
the directions about dosage and side effects. Pay close
attention to warnings about continued dosage and who
should and should not take the medication.
Under no circumstances should you mix
medications unless directed by your physician.
Never take medications prescribed for
Do not mix alcohol with your medications.
This applies to both prescribed and over-the-counter
If you must take medication before
driving, find out the effects of the medication from
your physician or pharmacist. Remembereven though
you may feel fine, you may not be totally free of the
adverse effects that can affect your driving. It
is your responsibility to know the effects of the medications
Whether you are calm, nervous, or hot-tempered,
your personality affects the way you drive. Dont
let your emotions interfere with safe driving. Use all
the good judgment, common sense, courtesy, and safe
driving rules that you can.
Some conditions, such as poor vision,
heart problems, diabetes, or epilepsy may affect your
driving. Discuss your condition with your physician
and follow his or her advice. You should also let DMV
know of any condition you have that might affect your
ability to drive safely.
AND MENTAL CONDITIONS PHYSICIANS ARE REQUIRED TO REPORT
Health and Safety Code
Section 103900 requires physicians and surgeons
to report patients at least 14 years of age who are
diagnosed as having a lapses of consciousness or dementia
(mental disorders) conditions or related disorders.
Although not required by law, any other
condition may be reported by physicians when they believe
a patient cannot drive safely because of a medical condition.
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