Some adults think they are invincible and take risks that they shouldn’t take. One example is driving when they are too fatigued to do so safely. This puts that driver, as well as anyone else on the road, in danger of being involved in a crash. Unfortunately, this doesn’t stop fatigued drivers from getting out on the roads.
It is estimated that up to 6,000 fatal fatigued driving crashes occur per year. The trouble with this is that they are all preventable if the driver would simply avoid driving until they are mentally able to do so safely.
Reasons fatigued driving is dangerous
Driving requires you to be alert, which isn’t usually possible when you are fatigued. On top of this, you must have the cognitive ability to handle the duties that come with operating a motor vehicle. Not being able to react to obstacles makes you more likely to get into an accident that can injure you or someone else.
Around 1 out of every 25 adult drivers who were surveyed reported that they had fallen asleep while driving during the 30 days prior to their response. This is only one part of the problem. There are also people who don’t fall asleep but who are simply too drowsy to stay safe, even if they don’t actually fall asleep.
Risk factors for fatigued driving
Typically, fatigued driving happens when a person doesn’t get enough sleep, but this isn’t the only cause of this traumatic problem. Having to do shift work, taking medications, living with a sleep disorder and driving on roads that are familiar can all lead to this issue. Many commercial drivers are also at risk of fatigued driving.
All drivers should be vigilant when behind the wheels of their automobiles. There are a few common signs that signal you need to pull over and get some rest before you start to drive again. If you experience any of these, don’t think that rolling down a window or turning on the radio will help you stay awake.
- Missing an exit
- Yawning frequently
- Blinking more than normal
- Drifting between lanes
- Having trouble remembering the drive
- Driving on a rumble strip
Fatigued driving crashes
If you are the innocent victim of a fatigued driving crash, you might opt to pursue a compensation claim. This names the liable party as the defendant and seeks to have them pay for the damages associated with the wreck.