Drivers surely know a lot of recommended tricks to increase your alertness, but they can fool you into thinking you’re ok when you actually aren’t. Here’s the real solution.
Imagine you are driving back home after a long road trip when you start feeling a bit tired. You open the window, turn the radio on, and try to force yourself to remain focused. However, without even realizing, your mind starts drifting and your eyes are beginning to shut down. You are woken up by the loud honk of the car in front of you and you manage to avoid a collision in the last second.
This is a common scenario with a very fortunate outcome. In many instances, though, drowsy driving can end up with catastrophic consequences.
You may think that this may never happen to you, but drowsy driving is so prevalent, that an entire week each year, between the 1st and the 8th of November, is dedicated to its prevention and awareness.
Let’s take a look at the most relevant statistics on drowsy driving, and discuss what you can do to prevent falling asleep behind the wheel.
Statistics on Drowsy Driving
- About half of adult drivers in the US admit to driving while feeling drowsy, according to the National Sleep Foundation.
- According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, around 100,000 crashes where police were called at the scene are caused by drowsy driving, every year.
- More than 300,000 crashes are estimated annually by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, a statistic that includes accidents that were not reported to the police.
- The most likely age category to drive while drowsy is represented by those under 25, which are involved in more than half of the accidents.
- Acute sleepiness can be caused by a lost night of sleep while reducing your sleep by only 1-2 hours every night will lead to chronic sleepiness, as a report of NHTSA demonstrated.
- According to a Consumer Reports article, medicine should be labeled more clearly when it comes to having drowsiness as a side effect. Medicines and alcohol can aggravate drowsiness or induce it.
- A study in Australia has shown that drowsy driving is comparable to having a blood alcohol content of about .05 percent.
As you can see, drowsy driving is not just an annoying, uncomfortable sensation to have while driving, but it actually puts you and others in great danger.
What You Can Do to Prevent Drowsy Driving
The fact of the matter is, there is no better cure to drowsiness than sleep. Drivers surely know a lot of recommended tricks to increase your alertness, but they can fool you into thinking you’re ok when you actually aren’t.
In order to prevent drowsy driving, NHTSA recommends to be aware of your sleeping pattern and plan your driving around it. Additionally, let someone else drive as soon as you notice signals that you might be sleepy, avoiding driving at night, and avoid consuming any alcohol when you are sleepy.
Involved in an Accident With a Drowsy Driver?
If you or a loved one have been hurt in a car accident by a drowsy driver, get in touch with an experienced car accident attorney at The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. as soon as possible to ensure your legal rights are protected. Give us a call 24/7 for a FREE case evaluation.
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