There are very few, if any people, who don’t understand what drunk driving is. People are beginning to learn more about the dangers of distracted driving. If you are like many, you’ve never considered that dehydrated driving could be dangerous, but research shows that it is.
Now that North Carolina is firmly planted in the hot weather, dehydrated driving is a very real possibility. Whether you are stuck in a hot vehicle and no air conditioning or suited up in gear to ride a motorcycle, the hotter you get, the faster your body loses water. If you aren’t keeping yourself hydrated, you can experience serious issues that could impact the way you drive.
These Drivers Are Most at Risk
Like with anything in life, some people are at a higher risk when it comes to dehydrated driving. These drivers include:
- Truck drivers who do not stop frequently or pack a cooler of water in their cabs
- Taxi drivers
- Bus drivers who aren’t permitted to leave their vehicle during a shift
- Driving instructors with full schedules
- Riders of any type of motorbike who are dressed in full protective clothing
- Farm workers in open vehicles
The Effects of Dehydration
When your body loses water through sweat, and even just breathing, you may feel thirsty. Some people choose to ignore this first sign of dehydration, especially when driving. You may not want to have to stop to go to the bathroom, slowing your progress.
When ignored, the symptoms of dehydration can intensify. A person may experience fatigue, dry mouth, dizziness, bad breath and headaches. A typically-sized adult male needs about two liters of water per day to remain hydrated. More water is required in excessive temperatures.
What Happens When You Drive Dehydrated
When you experience symptoms of dehydration such as dizziness, headache and fatigue, your ability to concentrate on the road is affected in a negative way. You may find that your reaction time is dulled, and you are putting yourself, your passengers and others on the road at risk.
Always carry a bottle of water with you when you are driving. You never know what lies ahead, and having water can make all the difference. You can also eat foods that are rich in water before your journey. Cucumbers, strawberries and bananas are all good choices.
If you begin to notice the signs of dehydration, get plenty of liquid in your body. Wait for about 15 minutes to see if you feel better. Driving while you are dehydrated is entirely avoidable.
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