Drowsy Driving Can Be Dangerous
Drowsy Driving Can Kill
As a driver, how many times have you experienced the need to close your eyes, even though you are far away from your arrival destination? If the answer is yes then what you may be experiencing is drowsy driving. While the term sounds innocent enough, driving while tired can lead to falling asleep at the wheel which causes over 100,000 crashes a year with more than 1,500 fatalities according to the National Safety Foundation.
The NSF further determined that most collisions caused by drowsy driving do not occur on the highways but rather on rural roads where drivers are traveling alone with little to no traffic around them to keep them alert.
For many drivers, pulling over for a cup of coffee, a stretch or fresh air can be solutions to succumbing to the urge to close their eyes. Although these actions may overcome the desire to close your eyes, it may not be a permanent solution when it comes to being tired while driving.
Young Drivers of Canada has the following suggestions for drivers to prevent drowsy driving:
1. Drivers should get enough rest before they embark on a long journey. If you have a restless night of sleep, plan to take a nap along the way at some point. Rest stops are an excellent way to catch up on rest. Drivers need to ensure they take their rest time into consideration to prevent them from being stressed for time to arrive at their destination.
2. Plan to stop every few hours. Stoping enables a driver to get out of their vehicle, hydrate, use the facilities and stretch. Some if not all of these actions can rejuvenate a driver.
3. Set driving limits. Restrict the amount of kilometres of driving per day. This will ensure that drivers get the rest they need.
4. Avoid taking any types of medications that can cause drowsiness.
5. Avoid any long trips if you are not feeling well. The last thing that you want to do is drive if you are feeling under the weather.
Signs of Drowsy Driving
There are several signs for drivers that indicate they are too drowsy to drive. They include:
A. No recollection of the last few kilometres of driving.
B. Drifting into a lane, including hitting the rumble strip.
C. Increased eye blinking and difficulty focusing on the road or keeping your eyes open.
E. Playing with the radio, looking for that song that will keep you awake.
Drivers are encouraged to take the necessary precautions when it comes to being alert while driving. Staying awake means staying safe and thinking of the motorists around you.