How common is drowsy driving? According to the American Automobile Association, it happens more often than many people realize.
Fatigue contributed to more than 20 percent of fatal accidents in 2014. This marked an increase of 4.5 percent compared to 2010.
More than one-third of motorists reported having fallen asleep while driving at some point. One in 10 reported having done so within the last year.
In total, an estimated 328,000 accidents, 109,000 of which cause injuries and 6,400 of which are fatal, involve drowsy driving each year. In most of these crashes, the fatigued driver drifts out of his or her lane.
If you were injured by a fatigued or negligent motorist in Georgia, contact a Marietta personal-injury attorney from Piedmont Injury Law. Ken Crosson can evaluate your case, talk to witnesses and structure your claim. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, time off work and other losses.
Call 678-909-0770 today to schedule a free initial consultation. Our office is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Read on to learn six tips to help you avoid drowsy-driving accidents:
- Eat smaller meals.
Digesting large meals can make you tired while driving. Try to limit your portion size before you hit the road.
- Take breaks.
As the AAA explains, fighting fatigue is a losing battle. If you notice the signs of drowsiness, pull over and take a break. This is particularly important on long trips.
Common signs of fatigue include:
- Inability to keep the eyes open or stay focused;
- Persistent daydreaming;
- Inability to keep your head up;
- Missing turns;
- And restlessness or irritability.
- Take a short nap.
A short nap might provide the recharge you need to finish your journey. Find a safe place to stop, and sleep for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Look for signs of drowsiness from other drivers.
Fatigued driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving – and the symptoms are similar. If you see a vehicle drifting, stopping too early or late at an intersection, or showing odd braking and accelerating patterns, keep your distance.
- Let a passenger drive.
If you feel fatigued but don’t want to stop, the National Sleep Foundation recommends that you ask a passenger to drive. Try to switch every two hours, and take naps between your shifts.
- Avoid driving when your body is naturally tired.
Most people are naturally tired between midnight and 6 a.m. Avoid driving during these hours.
Few experiences can match the trauma of an unexpected car crash – especially when people sustain injuries. If you were the victim of a negligent driver, contact Piedmont Injury Law.
Ken Crosson is a car accident lawyer in Marietta who can help you avoid mistakes, such as accepting a low settlement offer or unknowingly admitting fault to insurance adjusters. He can handle the legal aspects of your case so you can focus on recovery. Schedule a free initial consultation today by calling 678-909-0770.