From:                              Idealease <>

Sent:                               Friday, April 25, 2014 3:58 PM


Subject:                          Idealease Safety Bulletin - Driving Under the Influence - Of Allergy Medicine



Idealease Safety Bulletin






Brought to you by Idealsafe | 847-304-3190 |



Driving Under the Influence - Of Allergy Medicine


With allergy season officially starting, you should be aware that some over-the-counter allergy drugs can seriously impair your ability to drive a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV).

University of Iowa researchers who tested allergy sufferers in a driving stimulator found that the antihistamine diphenhydramine (found in many allergy and cold medications) significantly impaired a driver's ability to follow, steer, and maintain the correct lane. The study showed that diphenhydramine has more significant impact on driving performance that alcohol does.


Researchers said that of the 39 million Americans who suffer from hay fever and allergies only 4.8 million take prescription medications. The remainders go without treatment or take over-the-counter medications. These medications may be effective, but they often come with warnings stating drowsiness may occur and to use caution when driving a motor vehicle or operating machinery.

Researchers say even if you don't feel drowsy on allergy medications, you can still be impaired.


When drivers take over the counter medications they often forget that the medication has effects on their cognitive and motor abilities. It doesn't usually cross their minds that they are taking a drug and will be impaired. Even if they read the warning, it's common to assume that it only applies a few certain people and that "do not operate heavy machinery" means farm equipment or tractors, forgetting that CMV's should be included as well. Also, many drugs carry warnings about drowsiness or dizziness that people ignore. However, this is a serious problem that leads to thousands of vehicle crashes each year.


The danger of getting behind the wheel of a CMV when a driver is too tired to drive can be fatal.


Drugs impair our bodies in a variety of ways. They may blur our vision; make us tired or too excited; alter depth perception; make us see or hear things that may not be there; raise or lower blood pressure; react too quickly, too slowly, or not at all. They cause problems with concentrating on the task at hand. These problems can result from taking any type of drug: illegal, prescription or over-the-counter. When our brain function is altered, our muscle and nerve function changes.


Antihistamines - which block allergic reactions - slow down reaction time and impair coordination.


Over-the-counter decongestants - can cause drowsiness, anxiety, and dizziness. Drowsy driving is responsible for an estimated 100,000 traffic crashes and about 1,500 deaths every year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).


Common prescription drugs - (including medications to treat allergies, pain, diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, ulcers, depression, anxiety disorders, and insomnia) can cause drowsiness, affect vision and other skills that can be serious hazards on the road.


Tranquilizers, sedatives, and sleeping pills - slow down the central nervous system causing drowsiness and diminished reaction time, and impairing the ability to concentrate.


Over-the-counter drugs - such as cold and cough medicines, antihistamines, drugs to prevent nausea or motion sickness, pain relievers, decongestants, and diuretics can cause drowsiness or dizziness that can impair a driver's skills and reflexes.


Some drugs may make you feel alert and confident in your driving. In reality of the situation may be quite different. Drugs can fool you into believing you are in control of your driving when you are, in fact, impaired.


Here is a partial list of legal drugs that can - in the right amount - impair your ability to drive.

Anti-anxiety medication




Narcotic pain medications

Allergy medicines

Blood sugar medicines



Blood pressure medicines

Motion sickness medication

Ulcer medication


Anti-seizure medicines


Anti-nausea medicine


Cough syrups

Alcohol-containing medicines

Caffeine-containing medicines



To avoid harming yourself or others, partner with your physician and pharmacist to learn information regarding your medication's side effects, and what drugs are usually safe to combine-especially behind the wheel. Never take more than the prescribed dose, or take anyone else's medicine. Ask for non-sedating forms of your prescriptions if you are a professional driver. Allow your body time to adjust to new medications before you drive. Most importantly, each of us is responsible for knowing the signs and symptoms of being drug impaired before we get behind the wheel of any vehicle.

For more information including side effects of any drug go to 




Do you have your US DOT

Personal Identification Number (PIN)?


To view your CSA SMS information in its entirety you will need your US DOT number and US DOT PIN numbers to access the information as it becomes available to the industry. With the DOT number and DOT PIN number you will be able to "log on" and see your drivers names associated with the various inspections, violations and crashes as well as the scoring for "Hazardous Material" and "Crash" basics. The public will not have access to your driver's names or the "Hazardous Material" or "Crash" indicator basic scoring.


The US DOT PIN number was originally provided to the motor carrier when authority is granted. For many carriers this was years and employees ago and the PIN number has been lost.


The following are three ways that a motor carrier can obtain their pin number. (Click on this link to receive PIN by email) (Click on this link to receive PIN by US Mail)


Or call 1-800-832-5660 #3 then 0 and Request your PIN number in person.


If you are requesting your US DOT PIN number be sent by US mail allow 1 to 2 weeks to receive your PIN.




Roadcheck America is coming June 3-5, 2014.... Driving the Point Home!

Roadcheck is the largest targeted enforcement program on commercial vehicles in the world, with approximately 14 trucks or buses being inspected, on average, every minute from Canada to Mexico during a 72-hour period in early June.


June is National Safety Month

The 2014 National Safety Month theme, "Safety: It takes all of us," was inspired by the idea of continuous risk reduction - a key pillar in the Journey to Safety Excellence. A successful safety program depends on spotting hazards early, evaluating their risk and removing or controlling them before harm is done. Use this June to find creative ways to engage everyone in reducing risk in your workplaces. A little effort today has the potential to prevent tragedy tomorrow.


New Regulation Regarding Driver DOT Physicals Effective May 21st!


Attention Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) Drivers and Carriers:

Did you know an important law affecting you goes into effect May 21, 2014?


To keep America's interstate CMV drivers healthy and our roads safer, all interstate CMV drivers will soon be required to have their medical examinations performed by a Certified Medical Examiner listed on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners.


If you're an interstate CMV driver, you already need a valid medical certificate signed by a medical examiner. The only change is that after May 21, 2014, you'll need to go to a certified medical examiner for your medical certificate. If you've already had an exam and have a current certificate that certificate will be valid until its regular expiration date.

You can find certified medical examiners in your area-or anywhere in the country-easily by following:


1.  Visit the National Registry Web site and search by Zip Code, State, or examiner name.


2.  Choose a certified medical examiner from the list and call to make an appointment.


3.  If your preferred health care professional isn't on the list, simply refer him or her to the Certified Medical Examiners page to learn more about getting certified.


Please spread the word and encourage your fellow CMV drivers to find a Certified Medical Examiner by May 21st. They can find more information in the Fact Sheet for Drivers or by going to the National Registry Web site, so pass it along!


Thank you for keeping America moving and for your commitment to safer roadways.





April 25, 2014



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Registration is Now Open Online for the 2014 Idealease/NPTC Safety Seminars  


Idealease, its affiliates and the National Private Truck Council (NPTC) will again be hosting safety seminars in 2014. The one-day seminars will focus on basic safety and compliance, regulation changes and CSA. The seminars will be available to all Idealease customers, potential customers and NPTC members at no charge. The seminar provides important information applicable for both the novice and experienced transportation professionals.

To view the schedule and register for an upcoming seminar in 2014 click on the following link:




Safety Seminar Schedule: 


29-Apr: Harrisburg, PA

30-Apr: Greensboro, NC

1-May: Erie, PA

1-May: Columbia, SC

6-May: Toronto, Ontario

6-May: Everett, WA

8-May: Denver, CO

8-May: Edmonton, AB

13-May: South Bend, IN

14-May: Chicago, IL

15-May: Springfield, IL





The Idealease Safety Bulletin is provided for Idealease affiliates and their customers and is not to be construed as a complete or exhaustive source of compliance or safety information. The Idealease Safety Bulletin is advisory in nature and does not warrant, guarantee, or otherwise certify compliance with laws, regulations, requirements, or guidelines of any local, state, or Federal agency and/or governing body, or industry standards.



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