We are all familiar with the dangers of distracted driving and drunk driving, but drowsy driving is also a major problem on California’s busy roads and highways.
According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, drivers who are most at risk for drowsy driving include young drivers, commercial drivers, third shift workers and individuals with untreated sleep disorders.
This makes sense since many of these drivers are on the road for many hours at a time or during unconventional driving hours.
Signs of drowsy driving
Many signs of drowsy drivers are similar to those of a drunk or distracted driver. Drowsy drivers may drift off into other lanes, drive at varying speeds or veer off the road.
Signs that you are becoming a drowsy driver include frequent yawning, daydreaming or noticing yourself drifting off into other lanes or the side of the road yourself.
Avoiding drowsy driving
You can prevent drowsy driving by taking breaks every couple of hours and not driving alone, which can increase your chance of becoming drowsy.
Do not drink alcohol or take medications which can cause sleepiness before driving and always try to stick to a consistent sleep schedule and get enough sleep.
A common quick fix when you feel tired is to drink coffee or an energy drink, but these can do more harm than good. The effects usually only last a short amount of time. The only real cure for drowsiness is sleep.
Holding drowsy drivers accountable
Drowsy driving is responsible for many serious or fatal accidents in California. Perhaps you are surprised to learn that drowsy driving can be as dangerous as drunk driving.
Drowsy drivers have a responsibility to get off the road when they know they are too tired to keep driving. When they don’t and cause an accident, they are negligent.
When you are in an accident with a drowsy driver, it can be difficult to prove their drowsiness caused the accident. Having professional guidance can help you potentially receive compensation through a personal injury claim.