Fleet News

Check ‘safe drugs’

FLEETS are being warned that hundreds of over-the-counter medicines can impair the way company car motorists drive.

With the onslaught of the hay fever season imminent, drivers should be warned to read the small print of medicines which could affect their concentration and reaction speeds.

A Bill presented by London MP Andrew Dismore, calling for better information for drivers about the medicines they may be taking, received its second reading in Parliament last week. It calls for better warning labels to be printed on medicines.

RAC Foundation executive director Edmund King said: ‘We believe a clear, eye-catching system is needed to warn motorists of the risks of mixing certain medicines and driving.

‘It is easy to believe that a medicine sold over the counter is a safe medicine, but motorists should always read the small print before driving.’

Those behind the campaign believe current labelling is confusing and often printed on leaflets inside the packet and in small print.

Dismore said: ‘Clearer labelling seems to me an excellent way both to alert the public to the unexpected hazards of what they may be taking to cure their ills, and to provide a clear safety message, triggering the need to consider risks before driving.

‘A red triangle marking would stand as an unambiguous warning that the ability to drive or work safely might be impaired on taking the drug.’

Drivers are urged to:

  • Read the small print.
  • Stick to the recommended dose. Taking more than the specified amount can increase the risk of unwanted side-effects.
  • Ring their pharmacist or doctor for advice if they feel their driving has been affected. If in doubt, they should stop driving, not stop taking the medicine. Drivers should ask their pharmacist for a safe alternative.
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