The Dangers of Drowsy Driving: Don't Risk It

The Dangers of Drowsy Driving: Don't Risk It

At TWL, we aim to keep our customers moving. We also understand the dangers of the road. Supporting driver safety is a huge priority for our team, and that of our customers, particularly when it comes to driver fatigue - a serious problem that can lead to traffic accidents and fatalities.

Fatigued drivers are less attentive, have slower reaction times, and impaired decision-making and lane control. They also have a lower tolerance for other road users, increasing the risk of aggressive driving.

Falling asleep at the wheel, even for brief periods, is a serious concern. In 2020, there were 21 fatal crashes and 113 serious injury crashes in New Zealand caused by driver fatigue.

This interesting graph shows how the level of fatigue can directly impact crash risk, with risk increasing as fatigue levels increase.

At-Risk Groups

Certain groups of people are more likely to experience fatigue while driving, putting them at an increased risk of accidents. This includes:

-Young people with late-night lifestyles and lack of sleep

-Shift workers with disrupted sleep patterns

-Commercial drivers with long hours

-Individuals with sleep disorders (they are at a higher risk).

When Crashes are Most Likely to Occur

Fatigue often interacts with other factors like substance use and speed, which can further impair a driver's abilities and increase the severity of accidents. When it comes to the times of day when fatigue-related crashes are most likely to occur, there are specific peak periods:

-Between 3am and 5am, our bodies naturally program us to feel sleepy, which is why there is often an increase in fatigue-related accidents during this time.

-There is also a secondary peak in sleepiness between 3pm and 5pm, when physical and mental performance tend to be at their worst.

-The graph that depicts fatigue-related crashes during a 24-hour period shows that the highest number of accidents occur at 6am and 4pm, aligning with these peak periods of sleepiness.