Drowsy Driving Prevention Week: Drowsy Driving By The Numbers (INFOGRAPHIC)

11/16/2012 08:10 am ET | Updated Nov 16, 2012

The National Sleep Foundation has declared November 12-18, 2012 to be Drowsy Driving Prevention Week, in hopes of reducing the number of accidents related to sleep -- or, rather, lack of it.

More than 40 percent of Americans say they rarely or never get a good night's sleep -- and when they hit the road, that sleep deprivation can have serious repercussions.

Should you find yourself feeling sleepy behind the wheel, it's crucial to stop driving. The National Sleep Foundation highlights several warning signs that you're too drowsy to drive, including difficulty focusing, difficulty staving off daydreams, drifting from your lane, missing traffic signs, feeling restless or irritable and -- of course -- heavy eyelids or trouble keeping your head up.

Before long trips especially, make sure to get sufficient rest and remember to take regular breaks. Although most sleep experts often tell us to avoid caffeine close to bedtime, a couple cups of coffee can significantly boost alertness while driving.

Certain groups of people are more likely to drive drowsy than others, including younger drivers and shift workers, as you can see in the graphics below:

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In the slideshow below, you'll find more staggering statistics about driving drowsy, including the cost it takes not just on our wallets but our lives.

Drowsy Driving By The Numbers

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