Carter Craig, Attorneys at Law

Tips for averting drowsiness on the road

There are times when a driver feels like they have to take to the Virginia roads even though they are tired. In such cases, they would do well to consider the following tips. Lack of sleep is behind all drowsiness. The CDC recommends at least seven hours of sleep a night, and those who feel drowsy even after achieving this minimum may have a condition like obstructive sleep apnea.

It should also be remembered that certain prescription and over-the-counter drugs, particularly sleep aids, antihistamines, antidepressants and some blood pressure medications, induce drowsiness. A doctor could change the timing of dosages and make other regimen adjustments so that patients do not become drowsy behind the wheel.

A driver should know the symptoms of drowsiness. For instance, they may drift out of their lane and onto the rumble strip, miss road signs and fail to remember the last few miles they were driving. Tired motorists may yawn, and their eyelids could droop. When such symptoms arise, a driver could take a nap of roughly 15-20 minutes.

For some extra energy, caffeine may help. A 12-ounce cup of brewed coffee can give drivers about 150 milligrams of caffeine, which is sufficient to increase alertness. However, playing the radio loud and rolling down the windows are not effective ways of staying awake.

Drowsy driving accidents can be as severe as any other type of crash caused by negligence. Victims are often left with spine and brain injuries and extensive vehicle damage. However, they could be compensated for these and other losses, including lost income and any diminished capacity to earn a living, by taking legal action. An attorney could help a victim fight for a fair settlement.

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