Driving while drowsy can be very dangerous. Driving while tired contributes to 100,000 crashes each year, which cause 40,000 injuries and 1,550 deaths. Making sure you get enough sleep before heading out on the road can help ensure you stay safe and arrive at your destination unharmed.
Fatigue is mostly described as sleepiness and exhaustion, which can inhibit your ability to do normal tasks. There are many different signs of fatigue, including drooping eyelids, a bobbing head, and the overwhelming feeling that you need to go to bed. You need to be alert and aware when driving, which is very hard to do when driving while fatigued.
There are many different sources of fatigue, including:
- Time-related: this includes the time of day, physiological factors, and psychological factors, including body temperature, alertness, and hormone excretion.
- Task-related: which is the nature of the task that is being performed.
- Person- related: these are the coping factors for the feelings of fatigue, which include age, personality, fitness, and driving experience.
In order to fight the feelings of fatigue, make sure to follow at least one of the following countermeasures:
- Strategic. Although these are beneficial, they only have a temporary reduction of fatigue. These include doing things such as drinking coffee, or anything else with caffeine, and taking naps.
- Tactical. These can have immediate effects, but do not last long. This can include increasing your exposure to noise and light, and decreasing the temperature. Changing the hand posture often can increase circulation and help fight off fatigue.
- Technological. There are different technological ways to help prevent accidents that are due to drowsy driving, including lane tracking devices, which will alarm the driver if they start drifting into another lane.
Most importantly, make sure you have the proper auto insurance coverage to ensure you are protected in the unfortunate case of an accident related to drowsy driving. Contact Humble & Davenport in Renton, Washington for all your insurance needs.