Illinois drivers who get behind the wheel when they’re sleepy are putting themselves and other drivers on the roadway at risk for injury. Being tired interferes with a person’s normal body functions and can dramatically impair his or her ability to drive safely on the roadway. In fact, many experts consider driving tired as similar to the same level of impairment as driving intoxicated.
Why is tired driving so serious?
Tired driving resulted in 91,000 motor vehicle accidents throughout 2017. These drivers had impairments in their abilities to react quickly, to stay alert, to make good driving decisions, and to properly perceive depth. Many drowsy drivers exhibit the same amount of risky driving behaviors as drivers who are drunk. One study showed that lacking sleep for just 18 hours can affect a person’s reaction time, vigilance, and hand-eye coordination. The researchers of this study compared this lack of sleep with having a blood alcohol content of .05%
Signs that you’re overly fatigued
Many times, life can get so busy that you just crawl behind the wheel and head toward your destination. Before you know it, you’re experiencing many symptoms that show you’re overly tired. Some of the most common include having heavy eyelids, daydreaming, not recalling the last couple of miles, hitting the rumble strips, drifting back and forth between the lanes, and even missing your intended signs or exits. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s advisable to pull over in a safe place and to call for a ride.
While you might not think about it often because you’re so used to it, driving does require a lot of attention and coordination from the driver. When the human body lacks proper sleep, it’s unable to perform many of its basic tasks like driving with effectiveness. If you’re feeling tired, it’s a good idea to call for a ride and to put your keys back in your pocket.