Driving drowsy

can be just as dangerous as drunk driving

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTA) estimates that 100,000
police-reported crashes are the result of driver fatigue each year.


This results in an approximate 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries and $12.5 billion in monetary losses.

one in six fatal crashes

involves a drowsy driver

More than 1/3 of Americans have actually fallen asleep at the wheel.

60% of adult drivers reported driving while drowsy in the last year.

4% admitted that drowsiness was the cause of a previous accident

The AAA foundation estimates that one in six deadly crashes involves a drowsy driver

1 in 10 16-45 year old drivers think they might be driving drowsy once or twice a week.

96% of Americans think that it is unacceptable to drive drowsy yet 1/3 of Americans admitted to doing so in the past 30 days.

Sleepiness causes slower reaction times, vision deficiency, lapses in judgment and delays in processing information.

Being awake over 20 hours results in an impairment equal to a BAC of 0.08%.

It is possible to fall into a

3-4 second "microsleep"

without even realizing it

Who Is at Risk


Men are more likely to drive while drowsy than women (56% vs. 45%)

Men are almost two times as likely as women to fall asleep while driving (22% vs. 12%).

Adults age 18–39

Adults between 18-29 are more likely to drive while drowsy compared to other age groups

18-29 year olds 71%
30-64 year olds 52%
65+ year olds 19%


Adults who have children in their household are more likely to be a drowsy driver than those without children (59% vs. 45%).

People with sleep apnea syndrome (SAS) and narcolepsy are at risk.

Commercial truck drivers are
especially vulnerable to drowsy driving

Each year, over 110,000 people are injured and more than 5000 are killed in the United States in auto accidents involving commercial trucks

Crashes that can be attributed to fatigue range from 1%–56%, depending on the data base examined and the level of detail available from crash investigations

Who else is affected?

20% of pilots & 18% of train operators admitted to making a serious error due to fatigue

Time of day matters

Studies show time of day is the most consistent factor influencing driver fatigue and alertness.

A sleep deprived transportation worker is more prone to mistakes and report job performance problems about three times more often

Truck drivers whose sleep is disrupted by working at night or long hours are extremely susceptible to drowsy driving

For every truck driver fatality

another four people are killed

sleep deprivation in the U.S.

The following data is collected from 74,571 sleep deprived Americans. These are
the percentages of adults in each state who reported that they had unintentionally
fallen asleep over the previous 30 days.

Know The Warning Signs

  • Difficulty focusing
  • Frequent blinking and/or heavy eyelids
  • Trouble keeping your head up
  • Yawning repeatedly
  • Drifting/swerving from your lane
  • Hitting rumble strips
  • Missing exits or traffic signs
  • Feeling restless, irritable, or aggressive.

The following is a list of useful resources:

Read Articles About Sleep Deprivation

Facts and Stats About Drowsy Driving


The National Traffic Highway Safety Organization

The New England Journal of Medicine


Bring a passenger

Get a good night's sleep

Don't rush

Drink a caffeinated beverage

Avoid alcohol and medications with drowsiness as a side effect


Don't drive during hours you normal sleep

Take breaks