It is not unusual to see semi-trucks in Lakeland, especially Publix trucks and Amazon trucks. Those who drive semi-trucks provide a valuable service that is essential to the economy not just in Florida, but across the nation. However, semi-truck drivers are prone to drowsy driving, which could lead to a catastrophic truck accident.
What happens if a trucker does not get enough sleep?
We all have a natural circadian rhythm where we are naturally drowsy. For most people, this occurs between the hours of midnight to 6:00 a.m. and again in the afternoon from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Driving during these times if you have not gotten an adequate amount of sleep can easily lead to a drowsy driving accident. This is especially important to truckers, some of whom choose to drive overnight when traffic is lighter.
Driving while medicated
Truckers sometimes may choose to drive even if they are sick. They may take cold medicine or antihistamines to alleviate their symptoms and feel better. However, these medications and many other prescription and over-the-counter medications have a significant side effect: drowsiness. This drowsiness can easily lead to a truck accident. One study found that 17% of trucker respondents reported that they had an over-the-counter medication in their system at the time of a truck accident.
Do alertness tricks work?
Many truckers have their go-to “trick” to keep them awake when they are drowsy so they can keep driving. They may drink coffee or an energy drink. They may smoke a cigarette. They may roll down the window for fresh air or turn the volume on the radio up. However, these tactics generally do not alleviate drowsiness. In fact, they could make a drowsy trucker overconfident, leading to a drowsy driving accident.
Learn more about truck accidents
Truck accidents have the potential to be catastrophic due to the sheer size and weight of a fully loaded semi-truck. Drowsy driving should be avoided by truckers at all costs. This post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Our firm’s webpage on truck accidents may be a useful resource for those who want more information on this topic.