Preventing drivers from falling asleep

Connecticut motorists may not know that drowsy driving causes an estimated 6,000 fatal accidents around the country on an annual basis. Even so, many individuals who do not get enough sleep take to the roadways, putting everyone at risk. While there are some temporary fixes available, such as coffee and loud music, some designers are looking for more permanent solutions to the problem.

They say that they have created a piece of wearable technology that tracks the change in a driver’s heart rate and skin conductivity. The device, which is worn around the wrist, first determines the driver’s baseline by taking measurement. If the driver’s heart rate drops by 10 beats per minute or his or her skin conductivity drops by one unit below the baseline, the wrist device will vibrate. If the driver’s heart rate and skin conductivity continues to decline, the device will emit a gentle shock.

Initially, the designers were thinking of sticking with just the vibration. In certain situations, however, the vibration may not be strong enough to alert the driver to the fact that he or she is falling asleep while driving. The gentle shock is enough to help increase certain hormones to help keep the driver awake but are not strong enough to be a distraction that could result in a crash.

Although there are some who are attempting to create a solution that keeps drivers awake, becoming involved in a car collision caused by a drowsy driver is still a major risk. Although it can be difficult to determine if it was a factor in the crash, a personal injury attorney could gather evidence that shows that the motorist was not driving safely. For example, evidence may include dash cam footage and eyewitness testimony.