Top Tips to Beat Driver Fatigue
Driver fatigue is a serious concern for many motorists across Northern Ireland. Drivers typically experience fatigue when they travel late at night, lack sleep, drive for too long, or are stressed. It is an extremely dangerous state to be in as drowsiness reduces reaction times, impairs the speed at which information is processed, and the diminishes the quality of decision-making skills. Fatigue is so serious that it has often been compared to the effects of drink-driving.
According to recent statistics, some 13% of UK drivers have admitted to falling asleep behind the wheel. Tiredness is a serious problem that is associated with high injury levels and results in 1 in 5 fatal accidents on UK roads. According to Brake, it is estimated that worldwide between 10% and 20% of all road crashes are fatigue-related.
In order to protect you from the potential consequences of driver fatigue, we’ve put together a list of helpful tips that you can implement!
Get Enough Sleep
The best way to avoid driver fatigue is to get enough sleep! If you’re fully awake and alert, the chances of you getting into a car accident dramatically decreases. Adults are recommended to have at least 7 hours of sleep a day, so make sure you’ve had a good night's rest before you head out on the road.
Plan Your Journey
Preparing for your journey can significantly reduce the chances of suffering from driver fatigue. AA recommends that you don’t drive for more than 8 hours in a day. It is worth breaking down an extremely long journey into smaller segments, stopping every 2 hours to take a short break.
Watch for Warning Signs of Driver Fatigue
The next best thing you can do is arm yourself with the knowledge to notice the signs of driver fatigue. Watch out for any of these if you’re on the road:
- Frequent yawning
- Head nodding
- Heavy eyelids
- Difficulty focusing
- Irregular speed
- Impaired driving performance
- Feeling restless or irritable
If You’re Sleepy, Stop in a Safe Place
If you are starting to feel sleeping while driving, the best solution is to let a passenger drive or, if a passenger isn’t available, try to pull over and find a hotel to sleep for the night. As a last resort, you should try to find a safe place to stop and take a break. Don’t ever ignore the sense of drowsiness, it is better to short nap than get involved in a car accident.
We are car accident specialists with over 50 years of experience. If you were involved in a road traffic accident please contact us today.