Drowsy Driving Nightmares

by ShelbyW on January 9, 2013

According to a recent study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every 24 U.S. adults admits that they have recently fallen asleep while they were driving. This is a terrifying statistic because it means that the odds are high that someone is asleep behind the wheel near you every time you are on the road.

Therefore, whether you are the drowsy driver or they are in the car next to you, your risk of being in a car accident that was caused by fatigue is extremely high. If you are injured due to the actions of a drowsy driver in New York, with the help of, you can find the right accident attorney to help you.

Drowsy Driving Statistics

In addition to the numbers that were released by the CDC, the National Sleep Foundation’s Sleep in America poll discovered that 60 percent of adults drive while they are tired and 37 percent of adults have fallen asleep behind the wheel. To make matters even worse, 13 percent of the poll’s respondents stated that they fall asleep while driving at least once a month.

With this being the case, it actually seems unlikely that only 100,000 crashes are caused each year by driver fatigue, but that is the figure that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has released. The NHTSA also estimates that 71,000 people are injured and 1,550 people are killed each year by driver fatigue.

Tips for Staying Alert

Even the safest driver is occasionally going to find themselves in a position when they are driving while they are tired. Although the best solution is to not drive at all, this is not always practical. Therefore, it is a good idea to utilize one or more of the following tips to help you stay alert until you reach your destination.

1. Chew Gum – Studies have indicated that chewing gum temporarily causes your mind to become more alert when you are tired. Although this is definitely not a long-term solution, it can help make you feel more awake for short trips.

2. Make Frequent Stops – One of the main causes of driver fatigue is staying on the road for an extended period of time. Instead of attempting to drive from one place to another within nine hours, for example, you should add on at least 30 minutes so that you can stop every three hours for ten minutes. The simple act of getting out of the car and walking around for a few minutes will make you temporarily feel more awake.

3. Drink Water – Although a lot of people use caffeine to wake up, the crash that this can bring on later makes things worse on a long road trip. Instead, you should stay hydrated with water to keep yourself from becoming excessively tired.

4. Roll the Window Down – A blast of air in the face, especially if it is cold, always wakes people up for at least a few minutes, so it is a good idea to drive short distances with your window rolled down.

5. Pull over for a Short Nap – If you cannot keep your eyes open, it is better to pull into a rest area for a 30 minute nap than to take the risk of causing an accident.

Dealing with an Accident caused by Fatigue

If you are the victim of an accident that was caused by a tired driver, you should contact an attorney. Any injuries that you sustain from the accident would be the legal responsible of the other driver, and you can file a personal injury lawsuit if the car insurance does not cover all of your medical bills.

Legal researcher Shelby Warden contributes this article to alert the public about the growing problem of driver fatigue. Anyone involved in an accident in New York should go to to find a skilled attorney before signing insurance documents that may limit their rights. If you feel the negligence of another driver was the cause of your injuries, you may be entitled to compensation.

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