Drowsy Driving Prevention: Overcome Sleepy Driving in 5 Easy Steps
It has happened to all of us at some point. We did not get enough sleep the night before, we’re trying to pull an all-nighter on a road trip, or maybe our nighttime medication didn’t wear off enough by the morning commute. Drowsy driving may not seem like something to lose sleep over (pun unintended) but it can pose a serious threat to drivers around us.
Drowsy Driving Statistics
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 697 deaths from drowsy driving accidents in 2019. These nearly 700 deaths were absolutely preventable. Just a few years ago in 2017, the NHTSA estimates 91,000 police-reported crashes involved drowsy drivers. These crashes led to about 50,000 people injured and nearly 800 deaths that year. The impact of sleep driving can affect anyone at any time of day.
Drowsy Driving vs. Drunk Driving
Believe it or not, driving while sleepy and driving while intoxicated have strikingly similar characteristics. Why you ask? Drinking alcohol induces sleepiness. Also, drowsy driving has a serious effect on a driver’s attention, judgement, decision-making, coordination, and reaction-time. It’s difficult to tell the difference between driving sleepy and driving drunk while watching a car swerve on the road. So, if you would not drive under the influence, consider that the next time you think you’re not too tired to drive.
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5 Steps to Overcome Drowsy Driving
Drowsy driving prevention is simple! Try out these 5 steps:
1. Get enough sleep!
This one is obvious but think about your morning commute before starting that next episode on Netflix.
2. Understand your medications.
Does your medicine cause drowsiness? Consider taking it at night. If you still feel sleepy in the morning, try taking it a little earlier in the evening or speak with your doctor. (Do not stop taking or change medications without first speaking with your physician.)
3. On a road trip? Take breaks or switch drivers.
If you’re in it for the long haul, pull into a rest stop and give yourself some rest time or change out drivers every few hours so you are fresh.
4. Try to avoid peak sleepiness periods.
If you can, try to avoid driving between midnight and 6am. If you must drive during that time, follow the next step…
5. Recognize the sleepy signs!
If you’re yawning or blinking frequently, forgetting the past few miles drive, missing your exit, or hitting a rumble strip, you are too tired to drive! Pull over as soon as it is safe to do so.
If you’ve been involved in car accident in Central New York, The People’s Lawyer can help. We have over 60 years of experience representing members of our community just like you in motor vehicle accident lawsuits. Contact Brindisi, Murad, Brindisi & Pearlman to get free legal advice today.
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