Getting any kind of injury that limits your activities can be painful — and frustrating. Especially if you are a highly independent person, injuries can make it much harder to do all those things you are used to doing.
You may need to stop certain activities or seek the help of others to complete them. Hence, it is understandable that people with injuries often attempt to return to normal activities sooner than they should.
Yet it’s not only the risk of aggravating the injury they should worry about. It’s the risk of causing more injuries to themselves or others. This is of particular concern if they intend to drive.
Injuries affect reaction times
One study found a plaster cast below the elbow driver’s left reaction time by 16 seconds, and one above the left elbow increased it by 22 seconds.
Injuries can also limit the ability to apply force or limit the range of motion. For example, someone with an injured leg, hip or foot might be unable to press the brake pedal hard enough. Someone with an injured shoulder, arm or wrist may be unable to turn the steering wheel fully.
Who determines when people are fit to drive again?
Drivers themselves choose when to drive again. Yet many ignore their doctor’s advice, telling them to wait. So if a doctor tells them they should rest their arm for two months, they may grab the car keys much sooner.
If an injured driver crashes into you, get legal help to learn more about their injury. If you can show they should not have been driving yet, it may help you attribute blame and get compensation for the injuries they caused you.