Watch out for sleepy drivers this Thanksgiving holiday - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Watch out for sleepy drivers this Thanksgiving holiday

Updated: Nov 26, 2013 02:51 PM
© Stockbyte / Thinkstock © Stockbyte / Thinkstock
  • More NewsMore>>

  • Documents detail another delayed GM recall

    Documents detail another delayed GM recall

    DETROIT (AP) - General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and more than 30,000 warranty repair claims, according to government documents released Saturday.The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the government's auto safety watchdog, also didn't seek a recall of the compact car from the 2004 through 2007 model years even though it opened an investigation more than two years ago and f...More >>
    DETROIT (AP) - General Motors waited years to recall nearly 335,000 Saturn Ions for power steering failures despite getting thousands of consumer complaints and more than 30,000 warranty repair claims, according to government documents released Saturday.The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the government's auto safety watchdog, also didn't seek a recall of the compact car from the 2004 through 2007 model years even though it opened an investigation more than two years ago and f...More >>
  • One injured during skydiving in Mercer County

    One injured during skydiving in Mercer County

    GROVE CITY, Pa. One person was flown by medical helicopter from Skydive Pennsylvania in Mercer County after a rough landing.Emergency crews responded to the skydiving center at Grove City Airport around 6:50 p.m. Saturday evening.21 News is told the victim's parachute did open, but the man was injured during the landing.His condition is not known at this time.More >>
    GROVE CITY, Pa. One person was flown by medical helicopter from Skydive Pennsylvania in Mercer County after a rough landing.Emergency crews responded to the skydiving center at Grove City Airport around 6:50 p.m. Saturday evening.21 News is told the victim's parachute did open, but the man was injured during the landing.His condition is not known at this time.More >>
  • Motorists reminded of more Amish buggies on the roads

    Motorists reminded of more Amish buggies on the roads

    LISBON, Ohio - Orange barrels won't be the only thing motorists will have to watch for while traveling throughout Columbiana County.  Vehicles are often using the same lanes as Amish buggies and localMore >>
    LISBON, Ohio - Orange barrels won't be the only thing motorists will have to watch for while traveling throughout Columbiana County.More >>

TUESDAY, NOV. 26, 2013 (HealthDay News) -- Thanksgiving is a time of travel, but one expert warns that sleep deprivation and darkness can cause drivers to become sleepy even though they believe they're alert.

"When you are sleep-deprived for more than 24 hours, you need stronger sensory stimulation to maintain alertness," Dr. Xue Ming, a sleep medicine specialist at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, said in a Rutgers news release.

Sensory input such as light, noise and touch keeps people alert, Ming said. "But when there's little stimulation, the brain will drift into a full sleep state or a micro sleep, which can last from a fraction of a second to up to 30 seconds," she said. "In this state, the person feels like he is awake -- he might even still have his eyes open -- but he is actually asleep."

Drivers are most vulnerable to drowsiness from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., when there is a dip in their circadian rhythm, which regulates periods of sleepiness and wakefulness. The circadian rhythm also causes people to feel drowsy in fading daylight -- something to remember with the change in daylight savings time this weekend.

"If a person had a big meal at lunch or did not sleep well the night before, this decline is more prominent," said Ming, who noted that shift workers are particularly at risk for drowsy driving when they leave work in the early morning hours.

Ming said there are ways for drivers to boost their alertness for limited periods of time, including a 20-minute nap; two cups of coffee or a similar caffeinated beverage; brightening the dashboard; and buying a visor light box that simulates morning light and placing it on the passenger side of the vehicle.

"But if you are feeling really tired, the best thing to do is park your car and call a cab," Ming said.

Drowsy driving is a major problem in the United States. A 2011 National Sleep Foundation survey found that 60 percent of adults said they had driven at least once while drowsy, and 37 percent admitted to falling asleep at the wheel in the past year. One in six fatal traffic crashes is caused by drowsy driving, according to the American Automobile Association.

More information

The U.S. National Sleep Foundation has more about drowsy driving.

Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
  • Around the WebMore>>

  • GM boosting China production capacity to 5 million

    GM boosting China production capacity to 5 million

    Sunday, April 20 2014 10:52 AM EDT2014-04-20 14:52:53 GMT
    Sales of GM-brand vehicles in China should reach 5 million next year, and Cadillac sales will double to 100,000, the president of General Motors said Sunday.More >>
    The president of General Motors said Sunday that the company and local partners are boosting production capacity for GM-brand vehicles in China to 5 million.More >>
  • Ohio couple married 70 years die 15 hours apart

    Ohio couple married 70 years die 15 hours apart

    Sunday, April 20 2014 9:03 AM EDT2014-04-20 13:03:14 GMT
    NASHPORT, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio couple who held hands at breakfast every morning even after 70 years of marriage have died 15 hours apart.Helen Felumlee (FEHL'-uhm-lee) of Nashport in central Ohio died April 12. She was 92. Her husband, 91-year-old Kenneth Felumlee, died April 13.The couple's children say the two met as teenagers and had been inseparable since then.The Zanesville Times Recorder reports (http://ohne.ws/1in7erG) that the pair married Feb. 20, 1944, and raised eight children.Their...More >>
    NASHPORT, Ohio (AP) - An Ohio couple who held hands at breakfast every morning even after 70 years of marriage have died 15 hours apart.Helen Felumlee (FEHL'-uhm-lee) of Nashport in central Ohio died April 12. She was 92. Her husband, 91-year-old Kenneth Felumlee, died April 13.The couple's children say the two met as teenagers and had been inseparable since then.The Zanesville Times Recorder reports (http://ohne.ws/1in7erG) that the pair married Feb. 20, 1944, and raised eight children.Their...More >>
  • Easter Bunny train sparks New Jersey brush fires

    Easter Bunny train sparks New Jersey brush fires

    Sunday, April 20 2014 8:31 AM EDT2014-04-20 12:31:46 GMT
    POHATCONG TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) - A train carrying the Easter Bunny in northwestern New Jersey has ignited several small brush fires.The Express-Times newspaper in Easton, Pennsylvania, reports the fires occurred Saturday in Pohatcong Township and Phillipsburg. No major property damage is reported. A firefighter from the New Jersey state forest fire service fell and dislocated his hip.Huntington Volunteer Fire Company Chief Peter Pursell tells the newspaper the diesel en...More >>
    POHATCONG TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) - A train carrying the Easter Bunny in northwestern New Jersey has ignited several small brush fires.The Express-Times newspaper in Easton, Pennsylvania, reports the fires occurred Saturday in Pohatcong Township and Phillipsburg. No major property damage is reported. A firefighter from the New Jersey state forest fire service fell and dislocated his hip.Huntington Volunteer Fire Company Chief Peter Pursell tells the newspaper the diesel en...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms