Drowsy Driving Prevention and Keeping Your Family Safe

tired woman asleep at drivers wheel a drowsy driver

Here are some scary statistics:

According to the Center for Disease Control, one-third of all American adults are not getting adequate sleep. That’s right, one out of every three people you see, and potentially drivers on the road are sleep deprived.

drowsy driver caused accident and smashed windshieldEven scarier is the estimated 328,000 automobile crashes that occur annually due to sleepy drivers. These drowsy bashes result in over 100,000 injury accidents and roughly 6400 fatalities every year. Break it down and that means that almost 20 people a day lose their lives due to a fatigued driver behind the wheel.

And, of importance to parents out there, young adults and students are particularly at risk. This is due to the combination of inexperience in driving combined with the sleep deprivation that is common with late night study, extracurricular activities and early school start times.

The point is very clear: don’t drive when overly tired, drowsy or have had inadequate sleep. Even a short nap can make a huge difference and potentially save your life–as well as the lives of others.

How to tell if you are too tired to Drive

Trying to convince yourself that “it’s OK, I can keep myself awake, I can handle it” is already a bad sign. If you are not sure if you are too tired to drive, then these are some signs that you are too fatigued to drive:

  • Frequent yawning or difficulty keeping your eyes open
  • “Nodding off” or having trouble keeping your head up
  • Inability to remember driving the last few miles
  • Missing road signs or turns
  • Difficulty maintaining your speed
  • Drifting out of your lane

(The above taken from “Confronting Drowsy Driving” by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine)

Our job at Lucas Insurance is not only to provide you with the financial protection that you need in the case of loss, accidents and disasters but to do our best to hopefully to provide you with the helpful knowledge to prevent, or lessen, these damages altogether.

The best advice is that if you already know that you are tired or sleep deprived, then DON’T DRIVE. Take an Uber, get someone else to drive, find some way to get rest and if it helps, then remind yourself of the dangers that drowsy driving present.

Remember, drowsy driving is a significant factor in the fatal crashes that take place every single day

car crash accident rear endedAnd this advice is not just for you, the driver, but as a passenger, a parent, a friend, a colleague… in whatever role, care enough to tell someone not to drive when they are too tired. We know personally of a husband and father that was driving his family back from a long day in San Diego, tired from activities, heat and not enough sleep. He fell asleep and flew off the highway. His wife and friends escaped with injuries but he lost his life. Just not worth it. 

So, too tired? Pull over, get a nap, get some rest and continue to live another day. We take your well-being seriously and don’t want to see you become one of these statistics.

Want to learn more about keeping your family and yourself safe? Download this free brochure from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, How To Avoid Drowsy Driving.