Educate drivers on dangers of driving when lacking sleep

That Singapore is tied with Japan in as the country with the least amount of sleep among 100 nations is worrying (Don't sleep on it - discover benefits of snoozing longer; March 17).

While the health effects of sleep deprivation are well-publicised, many people do not seem to be aware of the immediate dangers lack of sleep poses, especially to drivers.

In countries like the United States, sleep deprivation is considered equally, if not more, dangerous than drink driving.

Nodding off at the wheel poses a danger not only to the driver, but also to other road users.

Maybe it is time the Singapore Government organised a campaign to educate drivers on the dangers of driving when they are sleep deprived.

This is especially so for those involved in shift work, as their work schedule has a direct impact on their circadian rhythms.

A sleep deprived driver also translates to one who is less vigilant, easily irritable and impatient. A usually accommodating road user could transform into an intimidating bully with a short fuse.

Unlike drink driving, where police can mount road blocks to catch offenders, those who are sleep deprived can only be educated to ensure they don't pose a danger to themselves as well as others.

Seah Yam Meng