Learn How You Can Prevent Driving While Drowsy and How to Know You Are Driving Unsafely
According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three Americans does not get enough sleep. This means that each day there are about 80 million drivers on the road who have not had sufficient sleep. In 2015 alone, there were a reported 5,000 fatal car accidents involving drowsy drivers, according to a report from the Governors Highway Safety Association.
Keep reading to see how serious the issue can be and what you can do to prevent becoming a statistic. If you are involved in a car accident, contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 for a free legal consultation.
It is Not as Easy to Tell if You Are Too Tired to Drive as Many Think
One of the issues with this particular type of unsafe driving is that most people think they are safe to drive even when they are not. This is especially true for people who work in certain industries, such as health care workers, paramedics, firefighters, truck drivers, and anyone else who works irregular hours or at night. Knowing the signs of drowsy driving can help you pull over when necessary.
Warning Signs of Drowsy Driving
According to the National Sleep Foundation, drowsy driving symptoms can include an inability to focus on the road, constantly yawning, having distracted thoughts, missing traffic signs or exit signs, drifting in and out of your lane, blinking frequently, and heavy eyelids. If you find yourself doing one or more of these then you may be too tired to drive.
What to Do if You Are Too Tired to Drive
If you are too tired to drive, then you should pull over and find a safe location. Do not pull off onto the shoulder of a highway as this can be dangerous – especially at night when many drowsing driving accidents occur. Once you are in a place that is safe, roll up the windows, lock your doors, and take a 15 to 20-minute nap.
This is the advice of AA, who points out that you should only do this if local laws allow it. Once you wake up, have a large glass of water and continue on your way. It may seem that caffeine would offer the best way to stay up but in fact water is more effective.
It is Not Worth Driving When You Are Drowsy
If you are drowsy then you are not safe to drive – it is that simple. Some studies even show that driving while drowsy can be as dangerous as driving while drunk. If you have been injured in an accident involving a drowsy driver, please contact Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 for a free legal consultation.