You probably understand that it’s not safe to get behind the wheel of your car after you’ve had a few drinks or to text while driving. What you may not realize is that when you drive home sober after an unusually long and tiring day out and about, you could be putting yourself and others at significant risk.
When you get behind the wheel to drive drowsy or while feeling fatigued, your driving ability won’t be as good as it usually is. In fact, research has shown that lack of sleep affects your driving capabilities much in the same way that alcohol can.
The longer you go without sleep, the worse your driving becomes
The human body requires regular rest for optimal performance. Our brains simply don’t function properly when we feel exhausted.
For example, if you have gone 20 hours since sleeping and get behind the wheel, your exhaustion will impact your driving skills roughly the same that having a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% would. Your reaction times will be longer and your ability to pay attention will be lower. In other words, if you got up at 6 in the morning and are now driving home at 2 in the morning, your driving will be as bad as someone at the legal limit for alcohol in their body.
Calling a cab or otherwise choosing not to get behind the wheel while exhausted can go a long way toward keeping you and other people safe. Those who get hurt in crashes caused by fatigued or drowsy drivers may have the option of taking legal action against the irresponsible driver who caused the crash.