Drowsy driving is just as bad as drunk driving. “Being awake for 18 hours straight makes you drive like you have a blood-alcohol level of .05.” Getting behind the wheel of a car while sleepy is dangerous and irresponsible.
Listen to Your Body
Our bodies tend to tell us when we need things – food, water, and even sleep. There are three important reasons why you should not attempt to drive while sleepy.
- Driving while sleepy can be fatal. Even 1 second of closed eyes can result in a crash that can harm, and even kill, you or other people.
- Driving during normal sleeping hours is more dangerous than driving during normal waking hours. Your biological clock is set to rest at certain times, and you will get tired much faster at those times. Even slight sleepiness can result in falling asleep behind the wheel during normal sleeping hours.
- You cannot wake yourself up. If you are driving alone and fall asleep, there is a chance that you won’t wake up until you crash into something – or someone.
How to Notice Drowsiness
Sometimes, we do not feel tired when we get into a car, but the tedious task of driving for a while can make us too sleepy to safely drive.
- Excessive yawning and the inability to keep your eyes open
- Memory lapses – you cannot remember the last couple of miles you drove
- Lane deviation – you start to swerve while driving
- Unsafe driving – you begin to do things like tailgate other cars or brake unnecessarily
If you notice that you are experiencing any of these symptoms, pull over and call for help. You even have the option of pulling over and sleeping in your car.
How to stay awake while driving:
There is no shame in pulling over when you realize that you are too tired to drive or telling someone that you cannot drive because you are too tired. The decision to not get behind the wheel when sleepy can literally save lives.