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Medicines That Might Affect Your Driving
Traffic Department warns the drivers about the side effects of certain medicines It is known that almost all medicines have side effects. They might be something minor like a mild headache or even not affect you at all. However, when it comes to driving, one should be extremely careful. According to the Spanish Traffic Department, 5% of all the road accidents are due to the use of medication. Therefore, it puts your life and health (and that of others) in danger. It also states that 25% of all the medicines authorised by the Spanish Agency for Medication and Healthcare Products (AEMPS) can affect your driving by producing drowsiness or by slowing down your reflexes. If there is a risk of side effects that might affect your driving, you will find a special sign on your medication box. It is a warning red triangle with a black car on a white background inside. False Positive Not only can these drugs put you and others in danger, they can also yield a false-positive result during a drug control test carried out by the police (Guardia Civil de Tráfico). The consequence of that is a fine of 1000€. Which would be quite unfair considering you did not know that your medication can alter your test results. Moreover, if you refuse to carry out the drug test, you might be subject to imprisonment. Prevention is better than cure, so always double-check with your doctor when you get the prescription. Non-Prescription Drugs You should also watch out for the medicines you can get without a prescription. They can have the same adverse effects and equally score positive during a drug control test. Don’t forget either that they can interfere with other medication you are already taking and provoke an unexpected reaction in your body. To always be on the safe side, you should consult your GP before starting any treatment. The side effects that a drug can have are also subject to the quantities your doctor prescribes.
POST-BREXIT DRIVING IN SPAIN
POST-BREXIT DRIVING IN SPAIN On the 31st of January 2020, Britain has officially left the EU. Luckily, the two parties were able to reach an agreement which now allows the British citizens to exchange their driving licences to Spanish ones until the 31st of December 2020. It is only starting the 1st of January of the next year that the transition period would come to an end. From then on, the general regulations, applicable to the third countries (non-EU), would apply to the British citizens as well. This includes that: a) It would no longer be possible to exchange British driving licences to the Spanish ones b) Citizens with British driving permits would be able to drive in Spain for the first 6 months from entry OR from the date of obtaining their Spanish residence According to the official British government website gov.uk, “visitors with a non-UK driving licence are able to drive in the UK; you do not need an international driving permit (IDP)”. However, it might be subject to changes as the transition period progresses and the negotiations continue. If you intend to reside in Spain for more than 6 months a year, it would be wise to exchange your driving licence to a Spanish one this year, that is, during the transition period. Otherwise, you would be required to obtain a Spanish driving licence from scratch. This means attending the lessons, passing theory test in Spanish and a practical driving exam with a Spanish examiner. In order to exchange your driving licence, you need to meet some requirements. For instance, you need to make an appointment at Traffic Department and fill out this form. You also need to pass a psychometric test. And, in addition, you would need to bring along all the required documentation to process your application: a) your ID (either passport or ID card or your residence card) b) your driving licence c) the proof of fee payment (Tasa 2.3) d) your recent photo of 32×26 mm
BRITISH DRIVING LICENCE EXCHANGE
On the 27th of January 2020, Clínica La Siesta, together with N332.es, participated in the event organised by the U3A association (University of the Third Age) to clarify all issues related to the exchange of the driving licence that British citizens might have. One of the very important questions that arises for Britons with a habitual residence in Spain (and by this we do not mean necessarily having official Spanish residence), is whether they need to exchange their driving licence or not. If you are a British citizen residing in Spain (regardless of whether you have Spanish residence or not) for more than 6 months a year, then you would need a Spanish driving licence. The 31st of January 2020 will be the official date of the UK’s departure from the EU. If as of this date you do not have a Spanish driving licence, you may drive in Spain with a British permit for additional 9 months. From this date on, the same traffic conditions would apply to British citizens as to the rest of the world. That is, you would only be able to drive with your national permit during the first 6 months from the date of entry or from the date of obtaining your Spanish residence. If you wish to continue driving in Spain beyond this established period, then you will have to obtain a Spanish driving permit from scratch. That is, attending the lessons and passing all the exams IN SPANISH. According to the official Spanish agenda, as of January 31st 2020, it will no longer be possible to process new applications for licence exchanges for British citizens. To apply for the exchange (BEFORE THE 31ST OF JANUARY 2020), you need to go to one of the offices of Traffic Department. In the province of Alicante there are 2: in Alicante itself and in Elche. You do not need an appointment, you just need to bring along this filled out form with you. Only then can you carry out the rest of the proceedings with no rush, which include making an appointment at DGT and getting a psychometric examination. It is possible that the official date for the acceptance of applications will be prolonged, as there are many Britons wishing to make the exchange before the transition period is over. La Siesta Clinic will keep British citizens informed on everything that concerns the exchange of their driving licences.