There are many factors that contribute to car accidents in Florida, including distracted driving, drunk driving and speeding. However, drowsy driving is another cause of many car accidents.
Drowsy driving is so prevalent in Florida that the Florida legislature designated the first week of September as Drowsy Driving Prevention Week. The week is in memory of an 8-year-old child who was killed when her bus driver fell asleep at the wheel.
The goal of Drowsy Driving Prevention Week is to educate Florida residents on the dangers of drowsy driving.
Signs of drowsy driving
You can usually spot drowsy drivers on the road because their behavior sometimes mimics distracted or drunk drivers. Drifting off into other lanes, driving too fast or slow or making abrupt movements are signs of a drowsy driver.
Drowsy driving is dangerous because it affects your reaction time, vision and judgment, increasing the chance of an accident. You could even briefly lose consciousness if you become too sleepy, causing you to collide with another vehicle or drive off the road.
Top causes of drowsy driving
Lack of sleep and driving during abnormal times are some common causes of drowsy driving. Many of us lead busy lives and do not get as much sleep as we should.
While there might be times when you cannot avoid this, you should try not to drive when you are lacking sleep. You should not drive at odd hours when you are normally sleeping. Our bodies are naturally used to sleeping at night and being awake during the day, so driving at night could automatically make you a drowsy driver.
For this reason, drivers who work second or third-shift or younger drivers who tend to be out at night are more are more prone to becoming drowsy drivers.
Staying awake while driving
You can avoid drowsy driving by getting enough sleep, taking breaks often and drinking small amounts of caffeine to stay alert.
Drowsy driving is a form of negligence, which is the legal basis for a personal injury claim. It is a good idea to explore your legal options after an accident with a drowsy driver.