DRIVERS could be slapped with an UNLIMITED fine if they get behind the wheel while they’re tired.
UK law dictates that if you cause an accident from doing this, you can be charged with dangerous driving and face an unlimited fine, a driving ban, and up to 14 years in prison.
So, to stop this from happening Vanarama has shared their top tips for motorists to wake up to the dangers of drowsy driving…
Time your drives around peak sleepiness periods.
Drivers are 20 times more likely to fall asleep at the wheel at 6am than at 10pm.
Most people’s body clock has a natural dip, which causes drowsiness and reduced concentration, in the early morning (2am-6am) and early afternoon (2pm-4pm).
If possible, try to avoid driving during these hours.
Get cold air regulating around your car. If your vehicle is stuffy or overly warm, this will make you feel sleepy whilst driving.
Open your windows or turn your air-con on full blast to wake you up – aim the air vents away from your eyes to avoid drying them out.
Chew gum. Research shows that chewing gum helps alleviate tiredness due to it stopping you from yawning.
Play some upbeat music. Try picking songs that you know the words to so that you can sing along and stimulate your brain.
Alternatively, Vanarama recommends listening to punk or indie music, as in their previous study, they were the two genres that increase motorists’ heartbeats the most when driving – keeping them alert.
Refrain from eating heavy carbs and sugary snacks before driving.
Whilst you may be tempted to eat crisps and chocolate as an afternoon pick-me-up in the office, they could be doing you more harm than good.
Once they metabolise and the sugar spike in your bloodstream wears off, your drowsiness can increase even more – making you sleepier and more prone to an accident on your drive home.
Exercise before you drive. Working out increases the blood flow to your brain, which helps lower your level of stress hormones.
So, cramming in a 20-minute workout on a morning before you drive to work will not only improve your fitness levels, but will help you feel more alert when driving.