Nationally, more than 83,000 police reported crashes are the result of driver fatigue each year and nearly one-third of adults admit they have nodded off while driving.
In an effort to decrease these numbers, Dr. Philip Rhoades, Director of the Social Science Research Center at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, is taking his message about drowsy driving into the classroom.
“Police are trained in drunk driving, but not drowsy driving,” said Rhoades.
Rhoades has given several presentations on drowsy driving to students since the beginning of the semester. “The Dangers of Drowsy Driving” presentation includes life-saving tips that students should follow when traveling.
“Some of the warning signs of fatigue are feeling restless, swerving, and having trouble remembering the last few miles,” Rhoades said.
Rhoades also says if you’re driving a long distance, you should schedule a break every 100 miles, or two hours, and walk around the car to wake up. If driving a short distance, caffeine and a short 10-15 minute power nap are the safest tips.
“Be sure to get a full night’s rest so that your body can be in the best condition to travel,” Rhoades said. “Old tricks like rolling the window down for fresh air do not always work.”
“The Dangers of Drowsy Driving” is funded by the Texas Department of Transportation.