Is it illegal to drive with a broken arm or with a cast?
Yes and no, as there are no specific laws around driving with a broken arm or wrist, but you could get pulled over if your driving is affected by your injury.
Just because nobody has written a law to explicitly ban driving with a busted arm or wrist, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t be pulled over by the police and fined for not being in full control of your vehicle.
Additionally, if your doctor gives you advice not to drive while you have a broken limb, then you cannot legally get behind the wheel. In some instances the police have required a doctor to sign paperwork to clear you for driving, which they will want to sight.
The laws of common sense apply when working out if it's safe for you to operate a car with a broken arm or wrist. Can you reach all the controls? Can you operate the gear shifter, indicators, windscreen wipers, windows, and even the door handles?
It's also important to consider that it isn’t just your safety you’re putting at risk by driving when you shouldn’t really be behind the wheel – how would you feel if a loved one was injured (or worse) in a crash with a driver who didn’t have proper control of their car thanks to a broken bone?
When it comes to insurance coverage, most companies will only investigate if the broken bone was a leading cause of the crash (and claim), however we recommend you read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) for your specific insurance policy (from your insurer) to ensure that there is not an exclusion for medical conditions.
While we found this link to the NSW rules helpful, most other states and territories don’t have well laid-out information available. Victoria tells you to check with a doctor before driving, while this legal blog backs up the belief that your ability to drive has to be okayed by a doctor rather than a policeman or your local transport department.
This article is not intended as legal advice. You should check with your local road authority to verify the information written here is suitable to your situation before driving in this manner.