Anyone can fall prey to drowsy driving, as this has a way of coming on fast. For example, truckers often stay on the road when they're tired as they have a schedule to keep.
At first, drowsy driving may not seem like that big of a deal. This is particularly true if you're close to your destination. However, it can impact a driver in many ways, including the following:
- Reaction times are longer when a driver is drowsy
- Driving after spending more than 20 hours awake is the same as having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of .08 percent
- Fatigued drivers are three times more likely to be part of a car accident
Since drowsy driving is such a serious problem, it's imperative for all drivers to understand if they're too tired to drive. Some of the most common signs and symptoms of drowsy driving include:
- Difficulty keeping your eyes open
- Frequent yawning
- Inability to remember what you saw or did over the past few miles
- Difficulty keeping your head up
- Missing turns, road signs or traffic signals
- Difficulty maintaining a steady speed
- Drifting in and out of your lane of travel
If you have any reason to believe you're too drowsy to drive, the best thing you can do is pull to safety and take a nap.
Although you may be alert, you shouldn't assume that every other driver feels the same.
For example, driving in close proximity to truckers increases the risk of a drowsy driving accident. If this happens, move to the side of the road and call 911. After receiving treatment, find out why the accident happened so you can protect your legal rights.