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Drowsy Driving Simulator Reveals The Dangers Of Traveling Without Proper Sleep

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Daylight saving time is this Sunday and with it comes a warning about driving. Studies show turning the clock ahead one hour increases car crashes caused by drowsy driving.

CBS2's Alice Gainer got a look at what driving without proper sleep looks and feels like through a special simulator.

A weighted vest. Arm and leg weights. All to help simulate what it feels like to drive drowsy.

"I used to work an overnight shift and I would drive home at 1 p.m. in the afternoon and I would be so tired," Gainer said.

As Gainer and her instructor got ready to drive in a closed course in the parking lot at Citi Field, the final touch came into play. Goggles which simulate my eyes shutting.

They start blacking out once every ten seconds. Later, they black out once every four seconds.

Maureen Short is a safety engineer at Chevrolet. She says if you think you may be drowsy…

Don't try and push through because you can't determine when you fall asleep."

Short says take some of the following steps:

  • Call someone hands free.
  • Play a game like eye-spy and engage your mind.
  • Turn on your car's safety systems if it has any lane assist features.

Most importantly however, Short says if you are drowsy don't drive.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates there are 100,000 drowsy driving crashes reported every year.


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