Drowsy Driving Facts & Tips

 

Facts

Drowsy driving crashes are obviously under reported. In Nebraska from 2012 to 2016, a total of 1,524 fatigued/asleep crashes were reported of which 13 were fatal and 700 involved injuries.

 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that in 2015, over 72,000 police-reported crashes involved drowsy drivers. These crashes led to 41,000 injuries and more than 800 deaths. However, there is broad consensus across the traffic safety, sleep science, and public health communities that this is an underestimate of the impact of drowsy driving.

 

Some Signs of Driver Fatigue
  • Inability to focus eyes and keeping head up, eyelids feel heavy
  • Yawning and rubbing eyes
  • Wandering and disconnected thoughts
  • Drifting within the driving lane, missing signs or exits
  • Turning up radio and/or rolling window down
  • Slower reaction time
Highest Risk Drowsy Drivers
  • Business travelers who frequently cross time zones
  • Commercial drivers who drive many miles and drive at night
  • Young drivers, especially males 16-25 of age
  • Shift workers, working nights or rotating shifts or working more than one job
  • Individuals with untreated sleep disorders

 

Recommendations to Help Prevent Driver Fatigue
  • Get regular exercise and healthy balanced diet
  • Aim for seven or eight hours of sleep
  • Avoid driving alone when possible
  • Take breaks every two hours or 100 miles
  • Avoid alcohol and medication that may impair
  • Keep driver’s area cool and ventilated
  • If necessary, pull over and take a power nap no longer than 15 – 20 minutes