Do you drive when you’re tired? Have you ever fallen asleep at the wheel, even for a split-second? If so, here are 4 reasons to kick the habit of driving while tired. 

  1. Fatigue causes fatal accidents

It’s impossible to drive safely while tired. Fatigue throws you off your game and makes you less alert. According to car accident lawyers from Hilda Sibrian, fatigue causes a significant number of car accidents in Houston and the data is the same across other U.S. states. Thousands of people die each year in fatal crashes involving a fatigued driver. 

Driving while tired puts your life and other people’s lives at risk. 

  1. Being at-fault for a car accident can increase your insurance premiums

Car insurance is already expensive. Now that credit scores are considered when determining premiums and registration fees are on the rise, drivers want to save as much money as possible. Any cost increase related to owning a vehicle is an inconvenience.

When you are found to be at fault for an accident, be prepared for your insurance premiums to increase. Premiums don’t always increase automatically. However, according to data gathered by Bankrate, drivers at fault for a bodily injury experience a 32% increase on average. In dollars, that amounts to about $459 per term. 

The average premium cost increase after an accident also varies by state. For example, Minnesota has the highest average increase at 87% while the average insurance rate in Texas rises by 40% after an accident. In New York, however, the average increase is just 12%.

Depending on your individual circumstances, you might be able to minimize a premium increase after an accident. However, from that moment forward you’ll pay a higher rate no matter what insurance company you choose.

  1. If you cause a fatal accident, you could end up with a felony

If you choose to drive while tired and cause a fatal accident, you could end up facing felony charges. If convicted, you’ll have a felony on your record that will severely limit your ability to live a free life even after you’re released from prison. 

If you kill someone, the courts won’t necessarily treat you differently from a drunk driver. For instance, in May 2020 a suspected drunk driver in Houston committed a hit-and-run that killed another man. The suspect was charged with felony murder because he had already been convicted of two DWIs.

If you have a history of accidents caused by fatigued driving and you cause a fatal accident, you might find yourself in the same position facing felony murder charges.

  1. A close call will shake you up

Anyone who has fallen asleep at the wheel and woken up just in time to avoid an accident will stay shaken up for quite some time. Those near-misses are a wakeup call for how serious it is to drive while tired. 

Hopefully, you won’t have a close call, but if you do, be prepared to feel horrible for quite some time.

  1. If you kill someone, you’ll regret it for the rest of your life

Nobody wakes up in the morning knowing their negligent actions are going to kill another person. However, that’s a reality for many. No matter how innocent your intentions are about why you’re driving tired, it’s never worth the risk.

If you kill someone in a car accident because you chose to drive tired, you’ll regret your choice for the rest of your life. The family and friends of the person you kill will be angry and may even act with hostility toward you. It won’t be a pleasant feeling and there’s nothing you can do to ease their pain. 

Driving while tired is the fastest way to ruin your life by taking someone else’s life.

No matter what, don’t drive when you’re tired

According to the NHTSA, drowsy driving is responsible for more than 70,000 crashes each year. If nobody drove while tired, tens of thousands of injuries and fatalities would be prevented. 

No destination is worth driving while tired. You can postpone a trip, sleep for several hours, call in sick to work, ask a friend to drive, or take a cab to your destination. If you can’t afford a cab, borrow money from a friend or just stay where you are. 

No matter where you need to be, the consequences of not driving will be far less than the consequences of driving while tired.