Why is driving at night so dangerous?
For one, research suggests that teens need 8.5 to 9.5 hours of sleep each night. Most teens say they only get six on average per night. If you’re not getting enough sleep, you are going to be tired throughout the day, especially when you’re driving.
It has also been found that being awake for 18 hours is the equivalent to having a blood alcohol concentration of .08, which is legally drunk. Research shows that you’re just as likely to get into a crash.
Sleepiness or fatigue can cause a variety of problems while you’re driving, such as impaired reaction time, judgment and vision; problems with information processing and short-term memory; and decreased attention span and motivation.
So what can you do to make sure you’re safe while your driving at night?
Make sleep a priority. If you get enough sleep, you’ll be able to pay attention more when you’re driving or in class.
If you’re too tired, don’t drive. Hand the keys to someone else or have somebody come pick you up. Safe is way better than sorry.
For more information on Drowsy Driving Prevention Week, check out the National Sleep Foundation Web site.
To find out more about driving at night, check out our major dangers for teen drivers page.