Even if you understand the dangers of drowsy driving, it doesn't necessarily mean that every other driver on the road is taking this level of caution. There are many people, such as truckers, who get behind the wheel when they're too tired to drive. This can often be due to the time constraints of getting cargo to destinations on time and to increase a trucker's take home pay.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately one out of every 25 adult drivers reports having fallen asleep while driving in the last 30 days.
Think about what this means. There's a good chance that someone in close proximity to your vehicle has fallen asleep while driving, thus putting you and everyone else on the road at risk.
Some people are more likely to drive drowsy than others, such as:
- Shift workers, such as those who work during the nighttime hours
- Anyone who doesn't get enough sleep before hitting the road
- Commercial truckers
- Drivers who are under the influence of alcohol, illegal drugs or prescription medication
- Any driver with a sleep disorder
There are many signs of drowsy driving you can personally watch for, such as:
- Missing your exit
- Drifting out of your lane of travel
- Constant blinking
- Bobbing head
- Heavy eyelids
If you experience one or more of these drowsy driving symptoms, move to the side of the road to assess your situation. It's better to be safe than sorry, so stay where you are until you decide on a safe plan.
What to do after an accident
If a drowsy driver causes a motor vehicle accident, move to safety and call 911. You can explain what happened, while requesting the assistance of police and an ambulance.
Your immediate attention should turn to your health, as you don't want to overlook the seriousness of your injuries. Also, if possible, collect evidence related to the accident, such as pictures of your injuries and the crash scene.
Once you're making your recovery, contact your insurance agent to discuss your situation and better understand how to file a claim. This is also the right time to learn more about your legal rights, as there are many ways to seek compensation for your injuries and related damages.
Read our blog and visit our website for more assistance on the steps to take after a motor vehicle accident in Tennessee.