State Safety Office
Drowsy Driving Prevention Week
Florida's Drowsy Driving Prevention Week - September 1-7, 2012
National Drowsy Driving Prevention Week - November 6-12
On Florida's streets and roads last year, 2,826 crashes were attributed to drowsy driving. 21 people were killed and 2,393 were injured.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that each year, driver fatigue results in 100,000 police-reported crashes, 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries and $12.5 billion in monetary losses.
Nearly 30 percent of American drivers have admitted to falling asleep at the wheel, according to a recent National Sleep Foundation poll, and more than half said they have driven while drowsy.
Maybe it's happened to you. You end up at your destination and don't even remember much of the drive. You jerk awake when you hear the rumble strips and realize the vehicle was drifting toward the shoulder. Drowsy driving is impaired driving.
Florida's Drowsy Driving Prevention Week honors Ronshay Dugans, an eight-year old Tallahassee girl who died when a drowsy driver plowed in the van she was riding in. When you snooze behind the wheel, everyone around you loses. By sharing her story, everyone can learn more about the potential dangers of drowsy driving.
Risks for Drowsy-Driving Crashes
- Sleep Loss
- Driving Patterns
- The Use of Sedating Medications
- Untreated Sleep Disorders: Sleep Apnea Syndrome and Narcolepsy
- Consumption of Alcohol Interacts With Sleepiness To Increase
- Interactions Among Factors Increase Overall Risk
Who's most at risk?
- Young people, especially males under age 26.
- Shift workers and people with long work hours.
- Commercial and long-haul drivers. About 15 percent of all heavy truck crashes involve fatigue.
- People with undiagnosed or untreated sleep disorders are seven times more likely to fall asleep at the wheel.
- Business travelers who spend many hours driving or may be jet lagged.
Was it an early morning for you? Did you have too much on your mind last night and couldn't fall asleep? Are you yawning now? Groggy? Nodding off? You're probably driving drowsy and you're at greater risk for getting into a crash.
What to do?
- Do not consume alcohol and avoid medications that cause drowsiness.
- Get a good night's sleep before driving. Good overall sleep habits will go a long way to prevent drowsy driving.
- Take a companion on long trips. Not only will you have someone to share the driving and help keep you awake, but you'll be able to save energy by carpooling too.
- Schedule regular breaks, about every 100 miles or every couple of hours.
- Check out Florida's network of rest areas, service plazas, truck comfort stations and welcome centers.
Where can I find more information?
- AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety - FAQ's Drowsy Driving
- National Sleep Foundation: Drowsy Driving
- National Highway Transportation Safety Administration
Help Spread the Word About Drowsy Driving
- Drowsy Driving Prevention Week Proclamation - Policy, Proclamation signed by Governor Charlie Crist designating September 5-10, 2011 as Drowsy Driving Prevention Week.
- Drowsy Driving Florida.org
- National Sleep Foundation's YouTube Channel - Video, public service announcements and interviews with celebrities on the issue.
- Drowsy Driving Prevention Week Toolkit - Posters, fact sheets and other resources to help spread the word about ways to prevent drowsy driving.
- Drowsy Driving Prevention Week Flyer - Flyer, a facts and tips resource to help spread the word about ways to prevent drowsy driving.
- Drowsy Driving Prevention Week Poster - Poster to help spread the word about Drowsy Driving Prevention Week.