Driving with a hangover, as dangerous as using your mobile

Rohan Mathew

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Driving with a hangover, after a high consumption of alcohol, is also dangerous: you will not test positive, but your risk of accident multiplies. We all know the dangerousness of the combination of alcohol and drunk driving. Having a few drinks and getting behind the wheel afterwards increases the risk of an accident and can even lead to a criminal offense.

What many are not so clear about is that “the day after” a massive intake of alcohol also has its risks when it comes to driving.

It is not just a few hours after consuming alcohol. The next day, you are still taking risks behind the wheel from the effects of the hangover. If you are going to drive, think about it before drinking. The effects of alcohol may be different for each person but one thing is for sure, the day after a heavy hangover is not the right time to drive any vehicle. It’s too risky because the driver’s concentration has not fully recovered as before he consumed alcohol.

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With a hangover, we are worse drivers

When we find ourselves in a hangover state, apart from the unpleasant symptoms that accompany it, such as dizziness, headaches, the urge to vomit, dehydration or fatigue, the difficulty in driving doubles and is exceeded 4 times speed limits.

This claim is based on a British study that examined the behavior, before and after drinking alcohol, of a series of volunteers in a real traffic simulator on a seven-kilometer journey. To be known, the UK is one of the countries with a fairly high DUI rate.

The research analyzed their performance behind the wheel and measured the speeds at which they were traveling, the safety distances they gave to other drivers, the collisions, the traffic violations they committed and the invasions of other lanes.

Thus, those drivers with a hangover circulated at a higher average speed. Thus, before drinking alcohol, they had an average speed of 52 km / h, while with a hangover they did so at 67 km / h. In addition, 2 of the 7 kilometers were traveled at illegal speeds, four times more than in normal conditions.

But it was not the only thing, since in all the measurements they offered worse results. Traffic violations related to respecting traffic lights or stop signs doubled, while invasions of other lanes increased fourfold.

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These results led the researchers to compare driving with a hangover to driving with a mobile phone, although it was more dangerous. Although the risk of using a mobile phone multiplies by 4 or 5 the risk of suffering an accident, the driver is aware of his limitation and tries to compensate for it by driving more slowly or increasing the distance with the vehicle in front. However, when driving with a hangover, the driver does not realize the deterioration in his abilities, which has a direct impact: having a hangover prevents safe driving.