Drivers in North Carolina have to face plenty of dangers on the road every day. Dangerous behaviors can include driving under the influence, reckless driving and drowsy driving.

Over the years, drowsy driving has gained much more prominence, rising to become one of the most common risky driving behaviors.

Why is drowsy driving so hazardous?

When examining the reasons why drowsy driving is dangerous, one must look at how it affects a driver. There are three key components involved in safe driving:

  • Keeping your eyes on the road
  • Keeping your hands on the wheel
  • Keeping your mind on the task at hand

Drowsy driving takes your attention away from one, or even all, of these components. Even changing your music can impact all three, even if for a short amount of time. Drowsy driving can have an extended impact, making it more dangerous. When tired, drivers have diminished reflexes. They can also have a harder time spotting danger and reacting to it appropriately. This can make already risky situations even more dangerous.

Who is most at risk for drowsy driving?

Any person is at risk for drowsy driving. However, some groups may be more susceptible to engaging in this behavior. According to some studies, these groups include teens and drivers in their early twenties. Newer drivers have less experience to make up for diminished reflexes and lowered attention. This can lead to a higher frequency of crashes, which reflects in distracted driving statistics. Many of the most lethal crashes involve younger drivers. The same goes for crashes involving serious injury.

Organizations are currently campaigning against drowsy driving. Many people are working to bring attention to how dangerous it is. They are working to dispel myths surrounding it, such as the myth that drowsy driving is safer than drunk driving. This acknowledgment of drowsy driving as a risky behavior may help to cut down on crashes.