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Staying safe when drowsy driving is unavoidable

Tiredness is a significant contributor to many automobile accidents. It dulls the senses, lowers reaction time and increases the possibility of a driver falling asleep and running off the road.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 600 people died because of drowsy driving-related crashes in 2020. While the most effective policy for avoiding a wreck caused by drowsy driving is to not drive when tired, the fact is, sometimes people have no choice. In these instances, certain practices may help drivers keep the roads safe for everyone.

Take breaks

Drivers need to take frequent breaks, particularly if they find themselves yawning or blinking a lot. It may help to stop, get out and stretch or walk for a few minutes. Alternately, they could pull off and take a quick nap, but only in a safe location like a well-lit truck stop or hotel. Picking up a caffeinated beverage to help keep them awake before continuing on the road may also be beneficial.

Listen to something

Listening to an engaging talk show, music or audiobook may also serve to keep drivers awake. The sound and the effort required to focus may distract them from their sleepiness.

Blast yourself with cold

If the inside of the vehicle is too warm, the heat may increase drowsiness. Keeping the air conditioner on or opening the window and letting fresh air flow in may help prevent this. Drinking cold water to avoid fatigue caused by dehydration, and splashing it on their faces when they stop at rest stops or gas stations may offer a sense of refreshment.

Drowsy driving increases the risks of the road. Individuals injured in an accident involving it have recourse to obtain compensation. Tired driving is not always avoidable, but drivers may take steps to stay awake.

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