Driver fatigue is extremely dangerous. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that driver fatigue leads to approximately 91,000 – resulting in over 50,000 injuries and over 800 fatalities per year.
If you drive for a living or are looking forward to a long-distance drive, it helps to look out for the signs of drowsy driving so you can take steps to protect yourself as well as the other road users.
Signs of fatigue driving
Fatigue driving happens when you feel extremely tired and worn while on the road. Here are some of the signs you need to look out for if you suspect that you could be fatigued behind the wheel:
- Frequent yawning
- Veering in and out of your lane
- Dozing on and off
- Missing traffic signs, exits and road turns
- Difficulty focusing on the road
Dealing with driver fatigue
The best way to deal with driver fatigue is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Here are two tips that can help minimize incidents of fatigue driving.
- Get enough rest prior to driving for a long distance
If you are planning a long road trip, it often helps to get adequate rest prior to your journey. Getting adequate sleep will get you refreshed and ready to take to the road safely.
- Do not drink or use medications that can make you drowsy
By all means, avoid alcohol prior to driving. Besides ensuring your safety, this will keep you from trouble with the law. Likewise, avoid any medications that are likely to affect your central nervous system. If you have to use such medication, be sure to arrange with someone else to drive while the drugs are active in your system.
Fatigue driving increases your risk of being involved in an auto accident. Find out how you can safeguard your rights and interests if you are hurt in an accident that was not your fault.