The Danger of Driving While Tired

The Danger of Driving While Tired

When you think of dangerous drivers, you probably think of drunk or aggressive drivers. What most people don’t realize is that tired drivers are often just as dangerous. Like driving under the influence, tiredness slows your reaction time, impairs your judgment and decreases your awareness. All of these things are a recipe for disaster and greatly increase your risk of crashing your car.

A Widespread Problem

According to AAA, 28% of the drivers surveyed struggled to keep their eyes open while driving at least once in a 30 day period. To make matters worse, drowsy driving is an even bigger problem amongst young drivers. In fact, 33% of drivers between 19 and 24 admitted that they had trouble staying awake while driving in a 30 day period.

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration estimates that over 100,000 accidents per year can be attributed to drowsy driving. In some cases, other estimates are even higher.

Indications of Drowsy Driving

A big part of the reason why we don’t hear as much about drowsy driving as we do about driving under the influence is because it can be difficult to determine if an accident was caused by a tired driver. However, there are some indications that an accident may have been caused by fatigue.

Accidents caused by drowsy driving usually only involves one vehicle with the driver is typically traveling alone. Oftentimes, the injuries are extremely serious or fatal.

Skid marks or an indication of evasive maneuvers are usually absent from the crash scene. There are no objective tests for drowsy driving, which makes it even more difficult for law enforcement to identify it as a crash determinant.


Preventing Drowsy Driving

At Waitz & Downer, we want you and your family to be safe while operating a vehicle on the road. Being aware of the signs of drowsy driving can help you prevent an accident. Warning signs of drowsiness may include:

  • Yawning repeatedly

  • Feeling as if your head is heavy

  • Wandering or disconnected thoughts

  • Missing traffic lights or signs

  • Tailgating other vehicles accidently

  • Drifting out of your lane

  • Having trouble keeping your eyes open or focusing

If you notice any of these signs, please pull over or have a competent, licensed passenger drive.

To prevent drowsy driving:

  • Travel with a passenger who is alert, and take turns driving

  • Avoid eating heavy foods

  • Take a break from driving every 100 miles

  • Avoid taking any medications that cause impairment or drowsiness

  • Consult with your doctor if you’re experiencing chronic fatigue or having difficulty getting enough rest

  • Drive only during times when you’re normally awake

  • Get at least seven hours of sleep

Contact an Auto Accident Lawyer Near Baton Rouge, LA

If you have been injured in a motorized vehicle accident, contact an experienced auto accident attorney today. Waitz & Downer can help you. Contact us today for more information at (985) 876-0870.