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(Slate)   We stigmatize drivers who are drunk, drivers who text, drivers who are high--so why don't we stigmatize drivers who are sleepy?   (slate.com) divider line 125
    More: Interesting, texting and driving, drunk driving, National Sleep Foundation, Tracy Morgan, social stigma  
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1778 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 Jun 2014 at 8:55 AM (14 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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vpb [TotalFark]
2014-06-14 07:42:35 AM
Because that would be us?
 
2014-06-14 08:21:38 AM

vpb: Because that would be us?


Great answer.
 
2014-06-14 08:43:32 AM
Ask Tucker Carlson
 
2014-06-14 08:59:59 AM
I thought we already did, subby.
 
2014-06-14 09:00:10 AM
Because if we did that, not one of us would be allowed on the road.
 
2014-06-14 09:00:48 AM
Because this isn't going to work:

"Hey boss. Yeah I can't come in. I don't want to drive sleepy."
 
DGS [TotalFark]
2014-06-14 09:01:38 AM
 
2014-06-14 09:02:27 AM
1. We already do. See trucker regulations.

2. Driving after taking drowsy meds is illegal.

3. Naturally getting tired isn't comparable to drinking and driving, so don't be stupid.
 
2014-06-14 09:02:43 AM
Because there isn't a simple test for it?
 
2014-06-14 09:02:52 AM
Fifty years ago driving while tired was looked upon as bad or worse than driving drunk.  I know a few times where I was driving tired on the highway and got woke up by the rumble strips even though I had the windows open and the radio on loud.   I took the next exit and took a nap, but thank goodness it could have been a lot worse.  I hate driving tired and I just refuse to do it anymore because it scares the piss out of me.

I know an over the road trucker that's taken his entire rig off the road and into a field twice in the last ten years because he was driving tired.  He lied both times and said either a car or animal forced him off the road.   But that is real scary shiat when a huge rig is going down the highway with nobody awake driving it.   It's amazing he didn't kill anyone or himself.
 
2014-06-14 09:03:06 AM
As someone who just drove between College Station and Austin on 4 hours of sleep in the past 60 hours or so, I'm getting a kick...

/actually I'm just waiting for a plane now, and the sweet release of sleep
 
2014-06-14 09:03:49 AM
Because night shift or go on welfare.
 
2014-06-14 09:05:44 AM

Fano: Because there isn't a simple test for it?




No skid marks at an accident is a likely sign
 
2014-06-14 09:09:21 AM
Because sleep is a basic human need. We can empathize.
 
2014-06-14 09:10:32 AM
I seem to recall a song that went something like: One of these things is not like the other, one of these things is a normal physiological function and need, the others are entirely voluntary, conscious decisions that impair one's ability to safely operate a motor vehicle.

/not defending driving while too tired to safely do so, just pointing out that the "argument" presented is farking retarded
 
2014-06-14 09:10:38 AM
So every time someone objects to self driving cars on the basis of fatalities can we point to this and tell them to stfu?
 
2014-06-14 09:14:00 AM

DGS: Yeah


/shakes tiny fist

I had a different source, but same idea: Mythbusters already confirmed this.
 
2014-06-14 09:15:43 AM
Cause Tucker Carlson said not to?
 
2014-06-14 09:18:22 AM
I for one applaud the notion of giving the police an absolutely subjective and unprovable standard that they can apply when they feel the least wee bit stroppy.

"Sir do you know you went through a red light?"

"Officer the light only turned yellow just as I entered the intersection. I could see it turn red in my rear view mirror after I was through."

"Are you arguing with me sir?"

"Well I certainly don't agree."

"Hey wait a second, you look sleepy. DOWN ON THE GROUND!! GET DOWN ON THE GROUND WITH YOUR FEET ABOVE YOUR HEAD NOW" *tasers random passers by for public safety*
 
2014-06-14 09:18:35 AM
I was too drunk to text so I "parked" in a ditch to get some much needed rest. See, I'm one the responsible ones on the road.
 
2014-06-14 09:19:52 AM
Smackledorfer:

3. Naturally getting tired isn't comparable to drinking and driving, so don't be stupid.

You're right. Driving tired is actually  More dangerous
 
2014-06-14 09:20:52 AM
Why don't we just stigmatize everybody? Why not only look at people in terms of their shortcomings, their dysfunction, instead of their overall worth as a human being? Why not put tattoos on everyone so that we know from which malfunction they may be currently suffering? Why not destroy every single person's self-worth in a fruitless quest for perfect safety and security of the whole? Because that, ladies and gentlemen, is the slippery slope we travel on when we attempt to look at people in terms of their flaws, their shortcomings, instead of their flawed beauty as a complete human being.

We are all beautiful here. When I plow my car into you because I haven't slept for three days from a meth binge, look into my eyes and see the mutual suffering of another person in pain, just trying to make my way in a messed-up world. Oh sure, I destroyed your new car, and you'll be left with a limp and pain for the rest of your days, but in this we are alike: We are both suffering. When you can't get out of bed in the morning because of the red-hot pain, rest assured that I share your pain, psychically if not physically. And this brings us together. Can you feel the love, brother? We are one.
 
2014-06-14 09:21:23 AM
500daysofhomer.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-06-14 09:22:38 AM
I do, I'm an equal opportunity stigmatizer.
 
2014-06-14 09:23:38 AM
We've accepted that it's necessary to rob ourselves of sleep so we can appear more productive and ambitious.  Putting the fact that lack of sleep addles the brain and lowers productivity aside, this acceptance being normal means we are forgiving of sleepy drivers.  It's noble or even heroic to drive to or from work exhausted because you've been working so hard, or taking care of some other responsibility.

When we look at a guy showing up to work with bags under his eyes and an extra large coffee in his hand we know, "Wow - this guy puts himself last."  That kind of guy is valuable. 

When we look at a guy who shows up rested and energetic we either assume he's an arrogant self-serving prick or we despise him while secretly being jealous.

Come to think of it, we're collectively pretty stupid, aren't we?
 
2014-06-14 09:23:47 AM
It's so hilarious to see people trying to justify their dangerous behavior.  But but but it's different because I do it!
 
2014-06-14 09:25:44 AM
Because sleep is the only one out of the four we all do.
 
2014-06-14 09:25:48 AM
Smackledorfer:

3. Naturally getting tired isn't comparable to drinking and driving, so don't be stupid.

Seriously?  WTF have you been smoking?
 
2014-06-14 09:28:49 AM
Because it's an easy choice to not drink or not get high and then drive. When it's "call out of work and not get paid" or "drive tired" most of us pick being able to pay the bills.
 
2014-06-14 09:30:33 AM
Because that would make unpaid overtime look bad, and companies wouldn't like that.
 
2014-06-14 09:30:54 AM
When I worked at one place that had me driving a pickup surveying power lines it was common to drive many miles and I would find myself getting tired. I tried the freeze out/burn out game as well as how loud can can you take the radio volume before permanent heading loss occurs. I say I tried it but nothing works better than pulling onto an off ramp and taking a quick nap.  Now that I have a cdl and drive an 80k pound truck I take getting sleepy seriously.  While waiting to unload I take cat naps sometimes if they are taking an excessive amount of time I might get a couple of hours. BUT, as far as hours of service go, when my time runs out I am fine for the ten hours and I will go to sleep.  The way I see this and there are other truckers who feel the same way, I treat every motorist I meet as if a member of my family is in that vehicle and I want them to make it back home so they will be there when I get home.
And the while cell phone thing we have it a bit rougher than regular motorists (see 80k truck I mentioned) first offense is 2700 fine if they catch you and it goes up progressively to the point of license suspension and revocation. That being said if you live in an area where there is a lot of oil field traffic (tankers) it is common to see a driver with one hand on the wheel and the other holding a phone. It is these assholes and the ones that the company they work for that don't care about dot rules that will cook logs and tell the drivers to keep running until they are done.


/ironically, when that driver had an accident the company is the first to say the driver should have known better and knows the rules.

//that is why seasoned drivers keep detailed records for when their employers throw them under the bus.
 
2014-06-14 09:31:00 AM

Vivaldi: Fifty years ago driving while tired was looked upon as bad or worse than driving drunk.


Are you saying people saw driving while tired as worse fifty years ago, or that drinking and driving views have changed so the ratio of the two is different?

Because fifty years ago there weren't regulations on how many miles truckers could be forced (or coerced by incentives) to drive. So that alone is evidence against the former interpretation of your point.
 
2014-06-14 09:32:31 AM

Pattuq: We've accepted that it's necessary to rob ourselves of sleep so we can appear more productive and ambitious.  Putting the fact that lack of sleep addles the brain and lowers productivity aside, this acceptance being normal means we are forgiving of sleepy drivers.  It's noble or even heroic to drive to or from work exhausted because you've been working so hard, or taking care of some other responsibility.

When we look at a guy showing up to work with bags under his eyes and an extra large coffee in his hand we know, "Wow - this guy puts himself last."  That kind of guy is valuable. 

When we look at a guy who shows up rested and energetic we either assume he's an arrogant self-serving prick or we despise him while secretly being jealous.

Come to think of it, we're collectively pretty stupid, aren't we?


You could have just said "because Politics tab."
 
2014-06-14 09:34:13 AM
Because sleep is for pussies?
 
2014-06-14 09:36:42 AM

Sasquach: As someone who just drove between College Station and Austin on 4 hours of sleep in the past 60 hours or so, I'm getting a kick...

/actually I'm just waiting for a plane now, and the sweet release of sleep


People have daily commutes longer than that drive.
 
DGS [TotalFark]
2014-06-14 09:37:22 AM
I think it's important to remember that I deserve freedom and liberty (hey, c'mon, white male here. Sure, not a christian, but I think I have enough wiggle room to call myself deserving, right?) to declare that the things I dislike ought to be banned and the things I like ought to be unregulated. It's really that simple. Founders or something. And.. uh.. TAXED ENOUGH ALREADY. Just you wait, after this Obama's coming for your.. uh.. what's after guns again that's taken 6 years and he still hasn't confiscated? No matter. THIS IS THE STEP TO TYRANNY.
 
2014-06-14 09:40:31 AM

Gary-L: Smackledorfer:

3. Naturally getting tired isn't comparable to drinking and driving, so don't be stupid.

Seriously?  WTF have you been smoking?


I should be more clear:
Both are terrible states to drive in. Saying one is worse or better is pointless as there are many levels of drunkenness and tiredness. 

The are I say they aren't comparable in is level of derision.

You have to actively make the decision to get drunk and drive. It is preventable with a small amount of planning hours in advance. Moreover, the decision to drink is one made for the personal benefit of pleasure. The act of getting tired comes from far less preventable, and usually less casual and frivolous, reasons.

Being tired sneaks up on you, isn't always predictable, and affects everyone. Drunk drivers, I would wager, also are likely to be at least as tired at 2 a.m. as I am if driving sober.

Hell, I've had the afternoon drowsies come on during a road trip. I stopped at the next reasonable point, drank some caffeine, and walked around a bit.  But for a little while there I was halfway to nodding off. I didn't know when, or if, I would get tired like that. There was no reasonable way to prevent or avoid becoming tired at some point on the drive. It could have happened to anyone.  I work the same schedule every work day. How tired I feel halfway home on any given day is a complete crapshoot.
 
2014-06-14 09:41:55 AM
uh, Slate...New Jersey (where Tracy Morgan's accident occurred) already has a "Driving while Tired" Law on the books*.  And other states already have laws that fund education of driving while tired.

-1 Slate.


* http://www.ncsl.org/research/transportation/summaries-of-current-drow s y-driving-laws.aspx
 
2014-06-14 09:43:14 AM
As someone who drove while nodding off more than a few times in my younger/foolish days, I agree that it should be more stigmatized. That might have made it easier for me to tell the folks on the departure end "sorry I didn't stay out late last night but I needed sleep before driving," and/or folks on the destination end "sorry I'm going to be late but I need more rest."

My friends and I were extremely conscientious about having a designated driver, no doubt because of all the campaigns and awareness. I might have been more conscientious about rested driving if there was a stronger campaign about that.

/often, despite what we rationally, intelligently know, we need campaigns about the obvious to overcome that devil on our shoulder that whispers "you're fiiiinne..."
//for those worried about enforcement issues, it doesn't *need* to be a law to have an effect
 
2014-06-14 09:43:27 AM
It used to be that drunk driving was this horrible thing that would guarantee you'd have a fatal accident.  At least, that's how it was always portrayed.  Entire generations of kids are taught that there is nothing worse or more dangerous.

Then, they came out with the whole 'Cell phones are just as dangerous' and people were like, 'Umm, what?  I drive while on the phone ALL the time.  And I've never had an accident'.  I used to drive from my college dorm to my girlfriend's house two hours away, chatting on the phone the whole time, every weekend, and it was totally cool.  Until they passed a law banning it.

Then, they came out with the whole, 'Studies show driving while emotional' is just as dangerous as drunk driving or driving while on the phone....and it's like....ummm, okay?  It makes sense that if I'm pissed off, I'm more likely to have an accident or whatever, but *as* dangerous as being drunk.  Thankfully, they can't easily test your emotional state, so this remains off the books....and sure, if you're in tears or whatever, don't drive.

Then, they tell us driving while tired is just as dangerous as drunk driving.
A = B = C = D

So, apparently, these things are all just as dangerous as each other.  But everyone just sorta rolls their eyes at this.  Everyone has driven while sleepy.  Everyone has driven while they really have to pee or are pissed off at their boyfriend/boss/car/traffic.  And all I can think is that, someone, somewhere is lying to us.  It just doesn't add up.
 
2014-06-14 09:43:33 AM

RocketCarHead: Because night shift or go on welfare.


Just finishing my night shift right now. And I'm very sleepy. I'd probably be safer on the road 8 hours ago and three drinks away from sober.
 
2014-06-14 09:45:04 AM

DGS: I think it's important to remember that I deserve freedom and liberty (hey, c'mon, white male here. Sure, not a christian, but I think I have enough wiggle room to call myself deserving, right?) to declare that the things I dislike ought to be banned and the things I like ought to be unregulated. It's really that simple. Founders or something. And.. uh.. TAXED ENOUGH ALREADY. Just you wait, after this Obama's coming for your.. uh.. what's after guns again that's taken 6 years and he still hasn't confiscated? No matter. THIS IS THE STEP TO TYRANNY.


Therrr t'kin' rrr no-doze!
 
2014-06-14 09:45:28 AM
It's illegal in most places to nap/sleep in your car, even at rest stops; if the authorities were truly concerned about the dangers of drowsy driving they'd rescind such laws.
 
2014-06-14 09:47:08 AM

megarian: Because this isn't going to work:

"Hey boss. Yeah I can't come in. I don't want to drive sleepy."


This is true but, " hey boss. Yeah I can't come in I don't want to drive drunk." Won't work either.
 
2014-06-14 09:52:02 AM

Ring of Fire: megarian: Because this isn't going to work:

"Hey boss. Yeah I can't come in. I don't want to drive sleepy."

This is true but, " hey boss. Yeah I can't come in I don't want to drive drunk." Won't work either.


Actually sometimes that does work.
 
2014-06-14 09:53:21 AM
And to add to my above posts:

I would be completely in favor of more and better public transportation options, and am firmly on the side of people working shorter shifts and fewer hours in the week. Humanity really doesn't need every person busting their hump at even 40 hours a week, let alone overtime. We make enough food and shelter without coming anywhere near that mark. I'd wager half the effort above and beyond that serves no purpose beyond helping the wealthy own more and more. I'm not advocating socialism as a way to implement that change, mind you, but I certainly hope I see significant steps made in the direction of fewer hours and lower wealth disparity in my lifetime. Yes, that includes americans have a smaller slice of the pie, and yes I realize how pointless it would be for americans to give up their piece of pie only to have the wealthy 1% of another country scoop it all up and the people of the 3rd world countries remain destitute anyways.

Or, in my case as a government worker, I work 10 hours of OT a week (not by choice, not that I throw the money away..) because it is more efficient for your taxpayer dollars than to hire 25% more employees in my position.

We could all be less tired and more healthy and happy than we are. But when you approach how to get there things start looking like a utopian dream. So realistically, we are gonna have some drowsy drivers. Realistically, we can and did significantly reduce drinking and driving in this country by changing attitudes about it and the legal side of it. The same can be done for tired driving, but it is doubtful we can do it to the same extent.
 
2014-06-14 09:54:04 AM

Goddess of Atheism: It's illegal in most places to nap/sleep in your car, even at rest stops; if the authorities were truly concerned about the dangers of drowsy driving they'd rescind such laws.


This.
 
2014-06-14 09:55:58 AM

Fark_Guy_Rob: So, apparently, these things are all just as dangerous as each other.  But everyone just sorta rolls their eyes at this.  Everyone has driven while sleepy.  Everyone has driven while they really have to pee or are pissed off at their boyfriend/boss/car/traffic.  And all I can think is that, someone, somewhere is lying to us.  It just doesn't add up.


You have to factor in that vehicles have become easier and easier to drive, with more features to save your ass if you lose attention for a minute. If you harmonize for the statisticals, you'll find that if we were all driving cars from 1954, today, at our present levels of sleep-deprivation, drunkenness, anger, and distraction, approximately 48% of the driving public would die every year in car accidents.

Study it out.
 
2014-06-14 09:56:10 AM

megarian: Actually sometimes that does work.


That is because you folks in detroit are living in mad max times.
 
2014-06-14 09:56:42 AM

Fark_Guy_Rob: It used to be that drunk driving was this horrible thing that would guarantee you'd have a fatal accident.  At least, that's how it was always portrayed.  Entire generations of kids are taught that there is nothing worse or more dangerous.

Then, they came out with the whole 'Cell phones are just as dangerous' and people were like, 'Umm, what?  I drive while on the phone ALL the time.  And I've never had an accident'.  I used to drive from my college dorm to my girlfriend's house two hours away, chatting on the phone the whole time, every weekend, and it was totally cool.  Until they passed a law banning it.

Then, they came out with the whole, 'Studies show driving while emotional' is just as dangerous as drunk driving or driving while on the phone....and it's like....ummm, okay?  It makes sense that if I'm pissed off, I'm more likely to have an accident or whatever, but *as* dangerous as being drunk.  Thankfully, they can't easily test your emotional state, so this remains off the books....and sure, if you're in tears or whatever, don't drive.

Then, they tell us driving while tired is just as dangerous as drunk driving.
A = B = C = D

So, apparently, these things are all just as dangerous as each other.  But everyone just sorta rolls their eyes at this.  Everyone has driven while sleepy.  Everyone has driven while they really have to pee or are pissed off at their boyfriend/boss/car/traffic.  And all I can think is that, someone, somewhere is lying to us.  It just doesn't add up.


Nah. On reddit someone recently posted a chart of causes of death, years 1900 vs 2000. The changes were drastic. The "accident" category has dropped significantly; my guess, that's mainly because we've focused on more and more safety issues. Safer designs, safer procedures, and more examination of what causes accidents-- and campaigns to reduce those causes.

Does the media hype a lot of this stuff? Sure, for the sake of simple headlines they'll "equate" things that the researchers never did. But that doesn't negate the findings. If I don't plan sleep and rest breaks appropriately, and kill someone else because I nodded off, that person's family members aren't going to say: oh, well, at least he wasn't drunk.

Tired driving *is* far more preventable. Farker Smacklrdorfer's comment above isn't totally wrong-- sometimes it hits you uunxpectedly-- but if we're honest, most times it comes down to better planning and choices, to being responsible ahead of time and on the drive by getting adequate sleep and pulling over to nap if needed.
 
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