Driving with diabetes: 3 essential tips for HGV drivers

Driving with diabetes: 3 essential tips for HGV drivers

Diabetes Test

Many accidents on the road involving diabetic patients are caused by hypoglycaemia because drivers have continued to drive ignoring their hypo warnings such as feeling faint or hungry.

For HGV drivers this is of massive importance whether you’ve just been diagnosed or have had suffered with diabetes for a long time. To help HGV drivers deal with diabetes better, here’s 3 essential tips compiled from very reliable sources…

1 – Check your licence

According to the UK government’s own website, you may need to declare details on your diabetes with the DVLA. Failure to do this means you could be fined £1,000 and prosecuted if you’re involved in an accident.

Sulphonylureas or Glinide tablets

Whilst car and motorcycle licences do not require drivers to declare their diabetes treated with Sulphonylureas or Glinide tablets, bus, coach and HGV drivers must fill in the VDIAB1SG form and send it to DVLA.

For those that take other tablets such as insulin injections, you must fill in the VDIAB1GEN form.

Insulin treatment

If you have diabetes that needs treatment by insulin, you will automatically lose the entitlement to drive vehicles within the C1/C1+E category (including C1, C1E, D1E, C, CE, D AND DE categories).

Drivers can continue to work by filling in the VDIAB1I form and completing a personal assessment and medical questionnaire. For more information on the assessments, view the Diabetes website here.

Drivers treating their diabetes through diet do not need to inform the DVLA. More information can be found here.

2 – Plan your breaks

Planning your breaks should be part of your routine before setting off on the road. With a need for someone with diabetes to respond to their hypo warning signs as soon as possible, it should be now even more important for you to plan breaks and have regular meals as you would do at home.

If in the rare circumstance you begin to feel hungry outside of your planned breaks, you should seek a safe layby or designated HGV area for you to park up, take a break and have something to eat.

Remember to switch off your engine, move away from the driver’s seat and have a fast-acting carbohydrate such as sweets, as well as a longer-acting food source.

It is also advised by Diabetes.org.uk to not start driving until 45 minutes after blood glucose has returned to normal.

3 – Treatments and checks

Common sense, but it is always important to keep your treatments to hand in your cab.

If you find that you have poor ‘warning signs’ or you have frequent hypos, you should probably not be driving and should speak to your doctor and agency about your situation.

It is also worth checking how diabetes may affect your personal and business motor insurance. Being up front with your agency about your illness means you are fully covered under their policy.

Any changes to your condition should be mentioned to your agency and DVLA. More information can be found on the Diabetes.org.uk website.

Stay safe on the roads

Whilst you may know most of this information, it’s still important to be safe and happy on the roads.

Here at Employ Recruitment UK, we care about our driver’s wellbeing because they are the life and blood of our business. We recognise that without quality drivers, we simply cannot exist, hence the reason we offer our drivers:

  • A range of vacancies – full and part-time, from odd shifts to week long tramping
  • Competitive rates of pay and bonus aligned to performance
  • Consistent  and regular work throughout the year
  • Fixed rotas
  • A choice of payroll solutions
  • In-house DCPC Training
  • Infringement avoidance and manual entry training
  • A supportive, happy working environment
  • Performance Management and recognition schemes
  • Driver Grievance and Disciplinary Proceedings

If you’d like more information on becoming an ERUK driver, get in touch with us here.


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