Sample Chapter


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. You should provide the person's name as shown on the license, 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 should be signed; however, you may request that your name be kept confidential.

Mail your letter to: Department of Motor Vehicles Driver Safety Review Unit M/S J234 P.O. Box 942890 Sacramento, CA 94290-0001

DMV will contact the person for a reexamination and, if necessary, administer a driving test to determine whether or not the person is safe to drive. The person may be issued a restricted license. It is possible that the person's driving privilege may be revoked as a safety measure, not only for the safety of that individual but also for the safety of the rest of the driving public.


Good vision is needed for driving. 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 won't 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 in knowing 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 checked.

If you are required to wear glasses or corrective contact lenses while driving, DMV may suspend or revoke your license if you violate this restriction. Have your eyes checked every year.


Hearing is more important to driving than many people realize. Your hearing can warn you of danger the 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. Keep it turned down, and keep at least one window partly open if you are listening to it.

While driving, don't wear a headset or earplugs. 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 have hearing problems 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 sleep. If you don't, you risk your life and the lives of others.

To keep from getting tired on a long trip:

Get a lot of rest before you start-at least a normal night's sleep. Don't take any drugs that can make you drowsy-even the night before you start. Don't drive long hours. Driving straight through can be dangerous if you are tired and sleepy. Set a common sense limit of 300 to 400 miles a day. What good does it do to drive "straight through," if you fall asleep when you get there? BR> 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. Switch off with another driver every hour or so. Stop for coffee or a soft drink every 100 miles or every two hours. Keep shifting your eyes from one part of the road to another. Look at objects near and far, left and right. Try chewing gum or singing along with the radio. Roll your window down and get some fresh air in your face. 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 potentially dangerous. Over-the-counter medicines that you take for headaches, 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 do sage 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 someone else. Do not mix alcohol with your medications. This applies to both prescribed and over-the-counter medications. If you must take medication before driving, find out the effects of the medication from your physician or pharmacist. Remember even 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 you take. When you are tired decisions are slower and harder to make.


Whether you are calm, nervous, or hot-tempered, your personality affects the way you drive. Don't 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. BR> Don't drive when you are upset or ill. You should know when you are not fit to drive. You should know how your passengers (by their actions or advice) may affect your driving. If you are in "good shape," you can decide more easily if a friend 's advice about driving is good or bad. If you are upset or ill, you may follow a friend's bad advice because you are not thinking clearly. If you feel good, you will drive better than when you are angry or sick.

Some Important Points To Remember

You should not choose to drive under any of these aforementioned circumstances. The accident potential increases dramatically for those who are unfit to drive


Section 410 of the Health and Safety Code requires physicians and surgeons to report in writing to the local health officer, the name, birth date, and address of every patient at least 14 years of age or older who is diagnosed as having a disorder characterized by lapses of consciousness or dementia (mental disorders) conditions. Although not required by law, any other condition may be reported by physicians when they believe that a patient cannot drive safely because of a medical condition.

1) If your license requires you to wear corrective lenses ( glasses or contacts ) while driving, you could:
     A-Decide on your own when you should wear them.
     B-Come back in one year and have that restriction removed.
     C-Have your license suspended or revoked if you violate this restriction.
     D-Drive without them and hope you don't get caught

2) It is against the law to wear a headset or earplugs while driving:
3) If you plan to drive on a long trip, you should:
     A-Consult your physician for some "pep pills" to help you stay awake.
     B-Get plenty of rest before you start.
     C-Practice driving long hours, this will help you get use to keeping up while driving.
     D-Drive until you get very tired then pull off the side of the road, for the safety of the other drivers on the road.

4) It is permissible and legal to drive on medications if they were prescribed by a physician because they won't affect your driving:

5) To keep from getting tired on a long trip
     A-Take regular rest stops
     B-Try chewing gum
     C-Stop for coffee or a soft drink every hour or two
     D-All of the above
6) It is important to have your vision checked
     A-Every time you buy a new car.
     B-Every 6 months
     C-Every 10 years
     D-Every one or two years
     E-Every 5 years

7) If you cannot see clearly while driving
     A-You cannot judge distances
     B-Spot trouble as easily
     C-Both A and B
     D-None of the above

8) When you are tired, you are:
     A-Less alert
     B-More alert
     C-More relaxed and better able to make decisions while driving
     D-Both A and C

9) Taking medications prescribed for someone else should:
     A-Only be done if your driving on a long trip.
     B-Not affect your driving
     C-Never be done
     D-None of the above

10) When you are tired decisions are slower and harder to make