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Reasons not to get behind the wheel while tired

Most Illinois drivers would readily admit that driving over the speed limit is dangerous. However, many may not be as aware of the dangers that come from driving while tired. According to some experts, if a person remains awake for 18 hours, their abilities are impaired comparable to what a person experiences when they drive under the influence of alcohol. When a person has a blood alcohol level in excess of the legal driving limit, they need to sober up before getting behind the wheel. Likewise, when a person is tired, the only cure is getting sleep.

To emphasize the potential dangers drivers may face when driving while tired, an automobile manufacturer is allowing young drivers to experience a ‘Sleep Suit.” This suit is used in conjunction with a pair of specialized glasses designed to simulate what a person who is excessively tired experiences while driving on the road.

Micro sleeps are involuntary and uncontrollable responses that the body experiences when it is tired. Experiencing micro sleeps while driving means that a driver could be driving blind for 10 seconds or more. The goal of the ‘Sleep Suit” and the goggles is to help drivers realize just how dangerous driving while tired can be. The suit consists of a helmet, a vest, and ankle and wrist bands, which add a combined 40 pounds to the driver’s weight.

The goggles are connected to a smartphone app and simulate what happens to a driver as their brain shuts down from sleep deprivation. The result is that the person drives blind for up to 10 seconds at a time. It is hoped that as young people learn about the dangers of driving while tired, it will positively impact their behavior.

When a person is the victim of an automobile accident caused by someone falling asleep behind the wheel, they may be entitled to financial compensation. A personal injury attorney may work with their client to help them evaluate and assemble a civil claim. They might assist the client in reviewing investigations performed by law enforcement as well as eyewitness accounts or camera footage.