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Have you ever driven your car while feeling lethargic?
Well, although driving while tired may seem like a harmless or normal thing to do, it can have serious consequences. Most people are aware of the dangers of drunk driving but not everybody is knowledgeable of the dangers of driving while worn out.
Phoenix DUI Attorney, Craig Orent, states driving while you are exhausted can be akin to driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of over .08.
You could get into a car accident and possibly harm yourself or someone else.
Lack of sleep and alcohol may slow down your reaction time, lower your concentration, cause you to make errors in speed/distance, poor judgment and can cause you to nod off or not pay attention to the road. This has grim consequences if you are operating a motor vehicle.
Any of these things alone can cause you serious harm but if you are drunk or tired, you can easily have all of these traits while you are driving.
The BMJ Journal's research shows that being awake for 17 hours has the same effect on your driving capabilities as a blood alcohol concentration of 0.05. Furthermore, if one were to go without sleep for 24 hours, the same effect of driving with a BAC of 0.1...
Drunk Driving Statistics vs. Drowsy Driving Statistics
Here we will take a look at the accident statistics of drunk driving in comparison to driving while one is exhausted.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported there were 10,497 deaths from alcohol-impaired driving crashes in 2016.
This breaks down to about 29 people in the United States die in alcohol-impaired vehicle crashes every day—that's one person every 50 minutes in 2016.
In the most recent year for which cost data are available, these deaths and damages contributed to a cost of $44 billion per year in 2010.
The NHTSA also reports that more than 100,000 accidents can be directly attributed to drowsy driving each year.
These accidents result in an approximate 1,550 deaths, 71,000 injuries, and roughly $12.5 billion in monetary losses. These numbers may be watered down because it is difficult to attribute the exact cause of an accident was due to drowsiness.
Which one is worse?
Is drunk driving or driving tired worse? Honestly, they are both, to a very great degree, just as dangerous. Sleepy driving is potentially more dangerous considering the fact that one cannot measure or determine if they are too tired to drive.
With alcohol, one can take a breathalyzer test and see if they are sober enough to drive. With being weary, there are no exact measurable tests to see if one is awake enough to drive.
The most important thing here is to not drink and drive and to not drive while one is tired. Use a rideshare app or switch off between drivers to avoid any accidents.
Just be safe!