According to the National Sleep Foundation, fatigued motorists cause 100,000 collisions every year. Despite this statistic, most people are surprised to learn that drowsy driving poses many of the same risks as drunk driving. In fact, individuals who have been awake for 18 hours have the same response time and coordination as those who have a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent.
People may not be as aware of the dangers of drowsy driving as they are of the risks associated with drunk driving, but a few states around the country are striving to change that. According to Occupational Health & Safety, Iowa was one of four states to receive a grant for launching a campaign this year aimed at preventing drowsy driving.
If you were injured in a collision with a drowsy driver, contact Eells & Tronvold Law Offices, PLC. A personal injury lawyer from our firm will assess your case to determine if you have grounds for a claim. Call 319-393-1020 to schedule a free consultation with a Cedar Rapids accident attorney.
Read on to learn four tips for combatting drowsy driving:
- Get Plenty of Sleep
Most adults need to get between seven and nine hours of sleep every night in order to function at full capacity. If you consistently get less sleep than your body needs, it is going to affect all aspects of your life. Try to establish a good bedtime routine, and stick to it whenever possible, especially if you have to drive the following morning.
- Take a Friend Along
If you have to make a long trip, take a friend along for the ride. Road trips are more fun with other people anyway, and it will ensure you have someone to take over when you start feeling drowsy.
- Be Aware of Your Medication’s Side Effects
Both prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications can cause sudden drowsiness, especially when mixed with substances like alcohol. If you take any kind of medication on a regular basis, make sure you understand all of the potential side effects, and listen to your doctor’s guidelines when it comes to mixing substances.
- Drink Some Coffee
If you’re already on the road and you feel yourself getting drowsy, stop at the nearest gas station, grocery store, or coffee shop, and purchase a beverage that contains caffeine.
Then, take a 20-minute nap. Since the caffeine will take approximately 30 minutes to hit your system, you should wake up feeling refreshed and ready to hit the road. Do not sleep for any longer than 20 minutes, though, because if you do, you will wake up feeling groggy.
Unfortunately, an alarming number of motorists ignore the dangers of drowsy driving. If you were hurt because of someone else’s carelessness, an accident attorney from Eells & Tronvold Law Offices, PLC can help you pursue the compensation you need to pay for medical bills, lost income, and other damages.
Call 319-393-1020 to schedule a free case evaluation. You can learn more about car accident claims in Iowa by visiting usattorneys.com/car-accident/iowa.