The holiday season is a time of celebration, family gatherings, and festive events. Yet, with all the joy and cheer, it also brings an uptick in motor vehicle crashes. While many factors contribute to this unfortunate trend, one overlooked culprit is holiday fatigue.
The hustle and bustle of disrupted schedules and increased stress can significantly impact driving performance, leading to potentially devastating outcomes. A crash is one event that can quickly derail holiday plans.
Why holiday fatigue is more than just tiredness
Holiday fatigue isn’t just about physical tiredness. It’s a blend of physical, emotional, and mental exhaustion. Between decorating, gift shopping, cooking and attending a flurry of social events, it’s easy to stretch yourself too thin. Add the pressure of family obligations and the emotional toll of the holidays, and you have a recipe for severe fatigue.
It’s more than just yawning behind the wheel. It’s a lapse in judgment, slower reaction times and decreased attention span. Your cognitive functions deteriorate, making it hard to respond appropriately to sudden changes or emergencies on the road. This is a perfect setup for motor vehicle crashes.
The direct link between fatigue and impaired driving
Drowsy driving can be as dangerous as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. When you’re tired, your attention drifts and your reaction times slow down, making you less able to handle unexpected situations while driving. Fatigue impairs your ability to make decisions and process information, two crucial skills needed when navigating the roads, especially during the busy holiday season when traffic is heavier than usual.
Even if you’re well-rested, other drivers who are fatigued can put you at risk of being involved in a crash. Anyone who’s injured should get medical attention right away. You may opt to pursue a claim for compensation to help offset related costs.