Different forms of distracted driving can have different negative impacts on drivers. Of these behaviors and actions, drowsy driving often ends up getting overlooked.
However, drowsiness on the road can cause major issues, not only for the driver but for anyone sharing the road with them.
Failure of wakefulness tips
The CDC discusses drowsy driving and its impact on driver safety. Drowsiness can actually have a similar impact on a driver’s state of consciousness as intoxication, first of all. Not many people know that, nor do they expect drowsiness to pack such a punch.
On top of that, the “wakefulness tips” that many drivers share with one another do not actually work. Though they might help keep a driver awake for just a little longer, nothing can keep a person awake flawlessly. Drivers will often begin to experience microsleep in which they doze off when they close their eyes, for up to three seconds at a time.
Microsleeping and high-risk crashes
It just takes one instance of micro-sleeping, or even just one instance of distraction, in order for a drowsy driver to end up in a crash. Many drowsy driving crashes also have a high level of damage due to the fact that drowsy drivers cannot react in any way to dangers around them.
This leads to crashes where a driver will veer off the road or into oncoming traffic, which serves as a leading cause of head-on crashes. These crashes have a particularly high rate of serious injuries and fatalities.
So, in short, drowsy driving does directly contribute to the overall number of fatalities on the road due to car crashes.