The majority of drivers are guilty of it, driving drowsy. We’ve all had late nights and had to be up in the early morning. The CDC estimates that 1 in 25 drivers over the age of 18 have reported falling asleep while driving within the previous month.
Although we might not put much thought to it, driving drowsy is extremely dangerous. It can lead to the driver falling asleep behind the wheel and causing an accident. According to the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) it is estimated that 83,000 crashes between the years 2005 and 2009 were caused by drowsy drivers.
In order to avoid driving drowsy make sure to plan ahead and get enough sleep the night before. However, life is unexpected and plans don’t always work out so if you end up having to go somewhere and are drowsy try opting for a car service, public transit, or ask a friend/family member for a ride. There are many affordable options that one can take in order to avoid driving while sleep deprived. Driving is a big responsibility, remember to be responsible and be a safe driver.
Sunday, November 1st marks the end of daylight saving time and kicks off the being of National Sleep Foundation’s Drowsy Driving Prevention Week. In a study, AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety estimated that in the United States drowsy driving is responsible for 328,000 crashes annually and that of those drowsy driving crashes 109,000 resulted in injuries and about 6,400 were fatal crashes. National Sleep Foundation urges everyone to put sleep first and drive when alert and refreshed. Check out the news clip below for great safety reminders and tips on avoiding drowsy driving!
No time to read a long-winded BLOnG? Welcome to the Three-Second-Stop mini-Blog.
Today’s Three Seconds: Daylight Saving Time Begins
Daylight saving time begins at 2:00 AM Sunday, March 12, which means we’ll move our clocks forward and lose an hour of sleep. The change in time can put our bodies off-kilter and it can take a few days to adapt. Be careful of drowsiness that could affect your driving ability and how you react to road and traffic conditions.
You’ve been there before, driving and struggling to keep your eyes open. Drowsy driving can be as dangerous as drunk driving. When you are tired or fatigued, your reaction time, coordination, and vision all suffer.
In 2009, 2.5% (832) of fatal crashes in the United States were reported to involve drowsy driving. And 1.3% (72,000) of all injury crashes in 2009 had reports involving drowsy drivers.
(NHTSA – Traffic Safety Facts Crash Stats: Drowsy Driving)
So what can you do to combat drowsy driving before it begins?
Get enough sleep regularly.
Keep your eyes moving and continually scan the roadway to avoid ‘highway hypnosis’.
Regulate the temperature in the car. Don’t let it get too warm. Open a window and get some fresh air moving.
Take breaks. Get out of the car and move around.
Remember, if you start to feel fatigued behind the wheel, the best thing to do is to pull over in a safe place and get some rest.