If you’ve ever been on a road-trip, you can understand the fatigue that settles in after hours of being on the road. Many drivers have been in the situation where they are in an exhausted state while driving. Transport Canada found that about 20% of fatal car accidents in Canada were a result of driver fatigue. The 2007 survey also showed that most Canadians have driven when they were fatigued and of those, 15% had fallen asleep at the wheel.
Considering the potential consequences of car accidents caused by people who fall asleep at the wheel, these are scary numbers. In fact, this area of impaired driving has created a special branch of personal injury law, dealing specifically with driver fatigue. In a culture where people are constantly on-the-go, and juggling commitments – this seems to be a consequence of not getting enough rest.
So, what causes fatigued drivers? This can be anything from a neighbor who kept you up all night, to the use of medication, consumption of alcohol and chronic sleep deprivation. Even the time of day can be a factor to how alert drivers tend to be, and the likelihood they will be involved in a motor vehicle accident. With so many people facing this problem, the question remains - what can we do about it?
If you experience constant fatigue while driving, the following tips are offered to prevent falling asleep at the wheel:
- Rest up before those long trips;
- Take turns driving;
- Take regular breaks when driving for extended periods of time;
- Eat light meals or fruit throughout your journey;
- If you feel tired or drowsy during your trip, pull over and take a nap for twenty to forty minutes as an effective way to stay awake.
There are also precautions that can be taken to prevent injury from a driver experiencing driver fatigue. These include keeping a look out for cars that are weaving, braking too late or not braking at all.
It’s understandable that with the busy lives we all lead, everyone goes through a time when they’ve driven fatigued; however, it is important to take proper precautions so that if we do drive fatigued, or are around someone who does, we get home safely.
In the unfortunate situation that you are injured by a fatigued impaired driver speak to an Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer immediately. To arrange a free half hour consultation with David Parker please call 902-469-9500.