Know the signs of drowsy driving

Throughout the state of New York, drivers face dangerous scenarios nearly every time they are on the roads. Whether they are surrounded by distracted drivers, drunk drivers or drugged drivers, both city streets and highways can quickly become hazardous. Additionally, drivers who are fatigued can suffer a loss of focus and slowed reaction time. What can be done to combat drowsy driving?

According to the New York State Department of Health, it is critical to recognize the signs of drowsy driving.

  • Yawning repeatedly
  • Struggling to keep your eyes open or focused
  • Forgetting the last few miles driven
  • Tailgating or missing traffic signals
  • Swerving or drifting between lanes of traffic

Unfortunately, drivers can push too hard. Driving home after a double shift at work. Insomnia. A long road trip. There are numerous reasons why someone can become fatigued while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. Some of the at-risk groups of people can include:

  • Commercial drivers
  • Employees after long hours or late-night shifts
  • People with sleep disorders
  • Parents of infants or young children
  • Young or newer drivers

Many people try to rely on unproven tactics to attempt to stay awake. Drinking caffeine, for example, opening a window or turning up the radio will not help you stay awake while driving. The caffeine in soda or coffee might provide a short burst of energy 30 or so minutes after drinking; however, the effect is short-lived and might cause an even worse energy-crash when it wears off.

If you are fatigued, avoid driving. Get a ride from a friend or call a ride-sharing service. Drowsy driving can lead to serious accidents with devastating injuries.