Drivers receive plenty of warning against getting behind the wheel while tired, but a recent study shows just how detrimental lack of sleep can be to traffic safety. Drivers who get less than four hours of sleep per night are 11.5 times more likely to crash than those who sleep for the recommended duration of seven or more hours. Moreover, the crash risk associated with sleeping 4-5 hours a night can equal the risk posed by driving while intoxicated. This data is derived from an analysis of over 7000 drivers in 4,571 crashes in the US. Authors of the study recommend driving during daytime hours, taking frequent breaks, avoiding heavy foods, and travelling with another driver capable of taking over if the first one starts feeling tired.
Original study published by AAA Foundation of Traffic Safety on December 6, 2016.