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Tired drivers are a threat to others on the roads

Out of everything that a driver could do wrong, being tired behind the wheel is one of the most obvious. When a driver can hardly keep their eyes open, they're not able to maneuver when needed. They're barely able to do what they need to do to stay on the road. In some cases, they can't even do that.

Drowsiness and exhaustion can both lead to serious crashes. Any time you're tired or aren't as alert as you should be, don't drive. If you do, you could fall asleep or make mistakes that put your life in danger.

Why do truck drivers cause accidents due to drowsiness?

Part of the problem is how much they have to work. A driver might cut corners or go as far as to lie about how many breaks they've had so that they can get the job done. This is a bad idea, though, because driving drowsy makes drivers:

  • Have a harder time paying attention to the roads
  • Respond with slower reaction times when they need to steer or brake suddenly
  • Less able to make good decisions when needed

What's most surprising is that around 1 in 25 adults reported falling asleep while driving in the last 30 days. Drowsy driving itself was believed to be responsible for 800 deaths, 44,000 injuries and around 72,000 crashes in 2013. It's impossible to say if these numbers are accurate, though, and it's believed that drowsiness may lead to many more crashes than this.

Why are truck drivers more likely to drive when drowsy?

Shift workers are more likely to drive when drowsy, as are commercial drivers. Drivers with sleep disorders and those who take medications that could make them tired may also be more likely to drive drowsy.

For truck drivers, drowsiness could come from legitimately being tired or from boredom due to hours on the road. It's more likely for the body to become drowsy at night, too, since the chemicals in the brain that activate sleep may become more active.

Overall, the most important thing to remember is that anyone who is drowsy has the ability to pull over and stop to rest. Even if it means putting a delivery behind schedule, it's more important to protect the health of a truck driver and the people on the roads around them. If you are hit by a drowsy driver, remember that you're able to file a claim against them in Illinois.

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