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Why exhausted drivers are a serious concern on the road

| Jun 17, 2021 | motor vehicle accidents

At certain times of the day, you are more likely to cross paths with drivers who are too exhausted to be safe. The nighttime is arguably when there are the most fatigued drivers on the road, but second- and third-shift drivers could be tired on the road any time of day.

Many of these drowsy drivers just want to make it home and fall asleep. Others try to stay awake by consuming caffeine or other legal stimulants. Why are fatigued drivers such a risk on modern roads?

Drowsy drivers aren’t safe enough

Researchers who analyze the impact of fatigue on the brain believe that the issues caused by drowsy driving are very similar to those seen with drunk driving.

Tired drivers have longer reaction times, more difficulty focusing and compromised decision-making ability. The more tired someone is, the worse their driving skills become. The risk of causing a crash goes up the longer someone goes without sleep.

Sleepy drivers might actually pass out at the wheel

It is almost impossible to accurately track how many people drive while sleepy, but self-reported data is frightening. According to what drivers themselves say, approximately one in every 25 drivers has fallen asleep at the wheel at least once in the last month. When accounting for drivers who were too afraid to admit the same, the actual number could be significantly higher still.

Clearly, many people need more rest in order to stay safe on the roads. You can avoid driving when you feel tired, but you can’t stop others from making unsafe driving decisions. Understanding the dangers of drowsy driving will help you stand up for yourself after a crash caused by someone too sleepy to be safe.