A South Carolina motorist who has been awake for 18 hours drives like someone who has a blood alcohol content of .05 percent. If that same driver has been awake for 24 hours, it is similar to having a blood alcohol content of .10 percent. Those who are tired will yawn frequently, close their eyes and have trouble staying in their lane.
Tired drivers may also have trouble remembering what the last exit or road sign was. A drowsy driver may also be more likely to tailgate, brake excessively or rely heavily on lane assist or other safety features. Those who know that they are tired should try to play games to keep their minds alert until reaching their destination. It can also be a good idea to take a 20 to 30 minute nap at a rest area.
Drivers are not encouraged to drink soda or coffee to stay awake. While it may seem to keep a driver alert, the brain will eventually force the body to fall asleep. In some cases, it may be best to simply call a family member or friend and ask for a ride. Passengers may also be able to take over driving duties while a person gets some much needed sleep.
If a person is driving while drowsy, it could constitute negligence. In the event that this person causes car accident, occupants of other vehicles who have been harmed as a result may be entitled to compensation. A financial award may make it possible to cover medical bills related to the accident and make up for lost wages and future earnings.