You have had a long day, you’re feeling kind of tired and you’re about to get behind the wheel of your car. If you fit this profile, we ask that you rethink this decision. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 2.5 percent of fatal crashes and 2 percent of injury crashes involve drowsy driving. The National Sleep Foundation found through their poll that 37 percent of Americans have fallen asleep at the wheel in the past year.
Who is more likely to drive drowsy?
· Commercial drivers
· Shift workers (work the night shift or long shifts)
· Drivers with untreated sleep disorders such as sleep apnea
· Drivers who use sedating medications
· Drivers who do not get adequate sleep
The warning signs of drowsy driving
· Yawning or blinking frequently
· Difficulty remembering the past few miles driven
· Missing your exit
· Drifting from your lane
How to prevent drowsy driving before taking the wheel
· Get enough sleep! According to the National Institute of Health, adults need 7 or 8 hours of sleep a day, while adolescents need 9 or 10 hours.
· If you have a sleep disorder, make sure to seek treatment.
· Refrain from drinking alcohol or taking sedating medications before driving.