Drive Alert, Arrive Alive
The California Highway Patrol (CHP) has recently issued a press release about their latest safety initiative, “Drive Alert, Drive Alive.” The CHP is joining forces with the National Sleep Foundation to observe National Sleep Awareness Week, March 2-8, 2015. The CHP hopes to raise awareness about the dangers associated with fatigued driving. This is an especially important topic with the upcoming change to Daylight Saving Time. Since our clocks will be ‘springing forward,’ we will be losing an hour of sleep starting Sunday, March 8, 2015.
Drowsy Driving Crashes in California
• In 2012, there were over 4,000 collisions involving drowsy drivers across the state.
• 36 people were killed in drowsy driving crashes in 2012.
• Over 2,400 people were injured in crashes involving drowsy drivers in 2012.
• The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that over 100,000 collisions are the result of drowsy driving each year.
National Sleep Awareness Week
Officials with the CHP want motorists to exercise additional care when transitioning to the new Daylight Saving Time schedule. It may not seem like much, but even throwing off your schedule or losing just one hour of sleep can have a huge impact in your wakefulness during your morning commute. CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow is quick to point out that fatigued drivers can be just as dangerous as drunk and drug-impaired drivers.
Driving Safely After the Time Change
A lack of sleep or change in sleep schedule can impact your awareness, reaction time and judgment behind the wheel. Since you know this, you can plan ahead to make the transition go smoothly. Adjust your schedule to account for the missed hour of sleep, and be mindful of how the change will impact your commute.
Drowsy Driving Warning Signs
• Difficulty focusing
• Heavy eyelids
• Frequent blinking
• Trouble remember the last few miles driven
• Missing exits or traffic signs
• Trouble keeping your head up
• Drifting, tailgating or hitting a rumble strip
• Feeling restless or irritable
Finally, the CHP recommends drivers pull over for a rest if they’re experiencing any warning signs of drowsy driving. The team at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, Inc. wishes everybody a smooth and safe transition to Daylight Saving Time.