Right Driver

Can you drive after experiencing a blackout

A blackout is a temporary loss of consciousness that a person has little or no control over. It affects your memory, leading you to suffer a sense of lost time. During a blackout a person might actually appear to function fairly normally but will have no recollection of it.

Blackouts come in two types: partial and complete. In a partial blackout you may be able to recover memories of what happened, but in a total blackout the memory loss is permanent. As you don’t have full conscious control over what you are doing, blackouts while driving are very dangerous.

Blackouts are commonly caused by alcohol consumption but can also be caused by:

  • oxygen restriction (e.g if carbon monoxide is prevalent)
  • epileptic seizures
  • low blood pressure
  • low blood sugar
  • certain types of medications
  • fainting or passing out
  • psychogenic seizure (a type of non-epileptic seizure)

You can be fined up to £1,000 if you don’t tell DVLA about a medical condition that affects your driving. You may be prosecuted if you’re involved in an accident as a result of the blackout and your insurance policy may be invalidated.

Car or motorcycle licence

Ask your doctor if your blackouts, fainting (syncope) or loss of consciousness affect your driving.

If your condition affects your driving you must tell DVLA by filling in form FEP1 and sending it to them. The address is on the form.

Bus, coach or lorry licence

Ask your doctor if your blackouts, fainting (syncope) or loss of consciousness affect your driving.

If your condition affects your driving you must tell DVLA by filling in form FEP1Vand sending it to them. The address is on the form.

Darren has owned several companies in the automotive, advertising and education industries. He has run driving theory educational websites since 2010.

Posted in Advice
Read previous post:
What’s traction control and how does it work?

To understand traction control, you have to know what traction is. Traction is the ability for a tyre to transmit...

Close