Driver fatigue is one of the most common causes of serious car accidents. It is particularly prevalent in truck accidents due to the long hours and tough working conditions of commercial drivers.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, more than 750 people die in accidents involving fatigued or drowsy drivers in the United States annually, and an additional 20,000 sustain injuries. At the Churdar Law Firm, we know that even the most cautious drivers can fall victim to the negligent or reckless behavior of other motorists.

If you were in an accident with a car or truck, contact a Greenville accident attorney for advice. Mr. Churdar may be able to help you recover damages related to your accident, including medical expenses and lost wages. Call us today at 864-233-0203 to schedule an appointment, and read on for five tips for staying alert behind the wheel:

1. Get Enough Sleep

The FMCSA recommends that truck drivers get adequate sleep every night. While sleeping well the night before a long trip is important, it is also crucial to maintain a regular sleep schedule on the road. Consistent, regular sleep cycles will help reduce fatigue, which could cause you to overlook critical hazards on the road.

It is also important to avoid driving when you naturally feel tired or drowsy. For most people, this is usually between midnight and 6 a.m., as well as between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.

2. Pull over and Nap

If you feel yourself growing tired behind the wheel, pull over and take a nap. According to the Sleep Foundation, drivers should take an “emergency nap” whenever they feel tired and cannot continue driving.

The Sleep Foundation recommends taking a nap that lasts between 20 and 30 minutes to restore short-term alertness. Naps are crucial for both your own safety and the safety of other drivers on the road.

3. Eat a Healthy Diet

Eating a healthy diet will help you stay alert while behind the wheel. According to the FMCSA, if you skip meals or eat at irregular times, you may feel tired or grumpy, which can affect your concentration.

Do not eat too much or too little before falling asleep. Rather, maintain a consistent, balanced diet whenever possible.

4. Avoid New or Unknown Medication

Be wary of any new medication. Some drugs may cause you to feel drowsy, and they could impact your concentration or ability to control your truck.

5. Recognize the Symptoms

Be vigilant and recognize the signs of fatigue. Pull over and take a rest if you begin yawning, feel your eyes getting heavy or experience blurred vision.

Driving long hours is a dangerous activity – even if you follow these tips for staying alert behind the wheel of your CMV. If you were in an accident, call or visit us at the Churdar Law Firm today at 864-233-0203. A Greenville personal-injury lawyer can determine if you may have valid grounds for an accident claim.