Tips for Avoiding Drowsy Driving Accidents
Driving while drowsy has proven to be just as dangerous as driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Like intoxicated motorists, drowsy drivers have slower reaction times, have a harder time making good decisions, and may struggle to pay attention to the road, all of which can have deadly consequences for other road users. Unfortunately, drowsy driving occurs a lot more often than most people realize. For instance, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that there are more than 90,000 drowsy-driving related car accidents every year. These crashes lead to around 50,000 injuries and nearly 1,000 deaths.
How to Know if You’re Drowsy
Drowsy driving can affect anyone, occurring when someone simply doesn’t get enough rest, because of an untreated sleep disorder, or due to unusual work hours. Prescription medications can also cause drowsiness, as can drinking alcohol. It’s important for drivers to avoid engaging in activities that could increase their chances of drowsiness and to keep an eye out for certain warning signs which could indicate fatigue. These include:
- Blinking frequently and yawning;
- Having trouble remembering the last few miles driven;
- Missing their exit;
- Drifting into a nearby lane; and
- Hitting the rumble strip on the side of the road.
Drivers who recognize these signs when driving can take a few different steps to help avoid endangering their own lives and the lives of others.
Preventing Drowsy Driving Accidents
Driving while drowsy is extremely dangerous, not only for the fatigued driver, but for anyone else sharing the road at the same time. Fortunately, there are some things that drivers can do to help prevent being the cause of these kinds of crashes, such as:
- Getting enough sleep, especially before taking long trips;
- Developing good sleep habits;
- Avoiding driving very early in the morning and late at night;
- Pulling over when they start to feel drowsy;
- Taking breaks every two hours, or every 100 miles when on a long trip;
- Factoring in rest time when planning a road trip;
- Driving in shifts when traveling with someone else; and
- Checking the labels of medications for warnings about drowsiness.
Unfortunately, even drivers who take the greatest care to avoid causing an accident could end up involved in a crash because of someone else’s carelessness. If you were injured in an accident because of a drowsy driver, please call our legal team to learn more about your legal options.
Schedule a Free Consultation Today
Even safe drivers can end up involved in accidents through no fault of their own. If you were injured in an accident because another driver fell asleep at the wheel or chose to drive while drowsy, feel free to call the dedicated Fort Lauderdale car accident attorneys at Boone & Davis for help seeking compensation for your losses. You can set up a free consultation by calling our office at 954-566-9919 or by completing one of our brief online contact forms. Call or contact us online to get started on your case today.