Anywhere from three to thirty-three percent of fatal motor vehicle accidents that happen each year are connected to drowsy drivers. And, according to the results of a study completed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), drivers in Texas are more likely than drivers in any other state to fall asleep while driving.
Across the country, 4 percent of drivers at any given time are drowsy driving or too tired to safely operate a motor vehicle according to the study. Men were more likely than women to fall asleep at the wheel and adults between the ages of 25 and 34 drove while drowsy more than any other age group.
Health officials recommend seven to nine hours of sleep per night in order to safely operate a car or truck. They also warn that hitting the rumble strips, not remembering where you’ve traveled in the last few miles or simply feeling tired are all indicators that it’s time to pull over and get some rest before continuing on.
The dangers of resting your eyes or nodding off for just a few seconds on the highway can be devastating. At 60 mph, you can cover almost 100 feet in just a few seconds. That’s the length of two school buses and more than enough time to cause a serious or fatal accident.
It’s enough time to miss seeing someone else cause an accident and have no time to react to save yourself as well.
Source: Boston.com, “CDC: 1 in 24 admit nodding off while driving,” January 3, 2012