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Tips to Avoid Driver Fatigue


Life gets busy. Many of us are rushing to get from point A to point B everyday. A hectic work schedule combined with overtime, late nights, and early mornings can be a recipe for disaster. Driving while fatigued is dangerous but preventable.. Check out tips on how to drive safe while still maintaining your busy schedule!

Driver Fatigue Induced Accidents

According to The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, Accidents involving fatigued drivers are 50% more likely to result in death or serious injury because they usually involve high-speed impact, where the driver can not react fast enough to swerve or brake to reduce the impact.

Accidents caused by tired drivers are most likely to happen:

  • on long trips on monotonous roads
  • between 2am-6am and 2pm-4pm
  • driving after eating a heavy meal
  • after having less sleep than normal
  • while under the influence of alcohol
  • if taking medicines that cause drowsiness
  • If the person driving has an untreated sleep disorder
  • after long working hours or on trips home after long shifts, especially night shifts or turnarounds.

The good news is that there are ways to avoid, or lessen the risk of fatigue-related accidents, ensuring you arrive at your destination safely, and allowing for safer roadways for all. Sometimes knowing the symptoms and warning signs of fatigue is the key to avoiding a dangerous situation before it starts.

How to recognize fatigue

There are ways to recognize fatigue before you hop in the car and start running over the rumble strip in the road. It’s important before operating any motor vehicle to stop and access how you are feeling, and to check for warning signs, such as:

  • Excessive yawning
  • Drifting into the opposite lane
  • Missing turns or exits
  • Forgetting driving through parts of the trip

Once you have experienced one or more of these symptoms, it’s safe to say you are fatigued and need to rest before continuing your journey, and definitely before starting your journey. It’s important to remember that there is nothing more important than being a safe and responsible driver, there is no deadline more important than a human life.

How to fight fatigue and stay safe and awake on the road

The key to fighting fatigue is to do all you can to avoid becoming fatigued in the first place. Once the symptoms set in the only cure is good old-fashioned rest. Energy drinks, rolling down the windows, and blaring the radio can only do you good for a short amount of time. Here are some tips for fighting fatigue on the road, before it starts.

  1. Catch some ZZZs (and lots of them)

    The night before a long trip, get 7-9 hours of sleep whenever possible. Nothing beats a good night’s rest. It is the key to a healthier body, a more positive attitude, and the fuel for a safer driver. By being consistent and sticking to a routine sleep schedule throughout the week, you can improve your sleep health.

  2.  Drink up on coffee (and leave behind the alcohol!)

    Grabbing a nice warm, or iced coffee before you hit the road can give you a nice jolt and make it easier to focus. The opposite can be said for alcoholic beverages. It is never a good idea to drive under the influence. Even just one alcoholic beverage before sitting behind the wheel can impair your judgment, and increase fatigue.

  3. Exercise

    Working out can give you more energy, and help you to have a better night’s rest. Although, it’s important to not exercise to the brink of exhaustion.

  4. Manage Your Expectations

    At the end of the day, we are all human, and there are only so many hours in the day. It’s important to break down what your priorities are and what you are capable of. If you believe you are putting yourself and others in danger by over-exerting yourself, in the long run, it’s best to express your feelings toward to your loved ones or employer. Find things that you are able to cut out of your task list and reserve energy for the more important duties.

Were You Involved in a Fatigue Related Car Accident? Contact an Experienced Attorney Today

If you are involved in a fatigue-related auto accident, chances are you are already a busy individual that needs to eventually get back on the road and are now dealing with the stress of injury and loss of work. Let the experienced attorneys at Shlosman Law Firm help navigate Louisiana’s complex legal system of comparative fault and coverage requirements for drivers.

We will work with your insurance company to help you feel financial peace in the middle of a chaotic ordeal. Our team of experienced attorneys has been helping the citizens of New Orleans for years and take every case, large or small, seriously.

Who To Call

If you’ve been in a car accident and would like to tell us more about it, we’re ready to listen. Schedule your no-obligation case evaluation now at 504-826-9427 or request more information online today.