Feeling Drowsy? Then Don’t Drive Home This Diwali

Sixty percent of adults say they have driven at least once while drowsy, and 37 percent admit to have actually fallen asleep at the wheel. If feeling Drowsy, Dont Drive Home This Diwali.

Diwali is just a couple of days ahead. This means that many of you will be driving home to your native places or parents. If your work schedule is too hectic, making you cut on your sleep to drive home; then don’t drive home. Instead take a public transport. Feeling drowsy behind the steering wheel is the last thing you should be doing this Diwali.

One in every Six Fatal traffic accidents are a result of Drowsy Driving

Sleep deprivation and darkness can cause drivers to doze when they believe they are alert. Many people admit to have driven while drowsy, but most do not realize how dangerous it can be. Sixty percent of adults say they have driven at least once while drowsy, and 37 percent admit to have actually fallen asleep at the wheel in the past year (US Data). One in six fatal traffic accidents results from drowsy driving.

Set aside driving to your parents, even relatively short drive home in a drowsy state can result in fatal accidents .Getting behind the wheel when you’re sleepy can cost lives, not only of the person driving or accompanying, but also others on road.

Why We Feel drowsy?

When we are sleep-deprived for more than 24 hours, our body strongly needs sleep to get back to normal alert state. If we are awake or sleep deprived for more than 24 Hours, we need stronger sensory stimulation to maintain alertness. Sensory inputs such as light, noise and touch keeps us alert, but when there’s little stimulation and we are too tired or sleep deprived, the brain will drift into a full sleep state or a micro sleep, which can last from a fraction of a second up to 30 seconds. In this state, the person feels like he is awake – he might even still have his eyes open – but he is actually asleep.

Timings when we are most likely to Feel Drowsy; and hence shouldn’t be driving

We are most vulnerable to drowsiness from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., when our circadian rhythm – which regulates periods of sleepiness and wakefulness – dips. Actually this is teh time, when most people in the world sleep. The circadian rhythm also prompts people to feel drowsy in diminishing daylight.

Factors which can make one Drowsy

1) Lack of Sleep the night before or lack of adequate Rest

2) A big meal at lunch


Tips to Avoid Drowsy Driving This Diwali:

1) Have adequate rest (sleep) before hitting the highway.

2) Commute during the Day Time

3) If you feel sleepy behind the wheel, tell someone else to drive. If there’s no other driver in the car; then pull over the car to the side of the road (stop the car) at some safe place; and take a quick nap (in Hindi, ‘Jhapki’). Drink Tea or Coffee.

4) If you already know, the festive time will be hectic, making you cut on your sleep and rest, then done drive home this Diwali. Instead take a public transport such as a bus, Train, or a Taxi.


Happy Diwali 2013!

Comments on this entry are closed.