As a driver on the road, you can never fully predict what other drivers are doing; nor can you prevent all accidents from occurring. In any case, it’s critical for you to recognize what signs of negligence exist in an effort to stay as safe as possible.
When it comes to drowsy driving, recognizing signs of negligence can be helpful in not only avoiding the driver, but also determining liability should an accident arise. Here are five of the most common signs you can look for to determine if a driver is fatigued on the road.
Like a drunk or distracted driver, a driver who is too tired will often find themselves swerving from lane to lane, hitting rumble strips, and coming back to the original lane. As people doze off, they lose control of their vehicle, causing them to swerve.
2. Erratic Braking
Drivers who doze off at the wheel or can’t remember the past few miles seem to refocus and make erratic decisions, such as braking when unnecessary. If you notice a driver consistently hitting their brakes when nobody is in front of them, it could be from the fear that arises after dozing off slightly.
3. Slowing Down and Speeding Up
Fatigue can make it so drivers are unaware of their control of their own speed. They slow down as they begin to doze off or yawn more often but speed up when they awaken. In these cases, the constant change in speed can be dangerous should you be behind or in front of a fatigued driver.
4. Slowed Reaction Time
One of the biggest reasons to give drivers ahead of you a significant amount of space is to ensure you have enough time to stop should the need arise. A fatigued driver may have a slow reaction time, braking late as they approach traffic. If you’re behind a fatigued driver, make sure you stay far back so you don’t have to react late as well.
5. Nodding Head
We would never recommend driving and looking at other drivers as this is a distraction in itself. However, if you glance in your mirror or otherwise notice a driver who keeps nodding his or her head, it could be a clear sign of fatigue.
If you encounter a fatigued driver, stay clear and report them to local law enforcement.
While you can recognize different signs of negligence, you may not be able to prevent all accidents. If you suffer harm in a crash with a drowsy driver, our Salem car accident lawyers at The Gatti Law Firm will be there to help advocate on your behalf and pursue the justice and compensation you deserve.
Call us at (503) 543-1114 today to discuss your rights.