According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 1 in 25 drivers have reportedly fallen asleep while driving. In 2013, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimated that fatigued drivers were responsible for approximately 72,000 crashes, 44,000 injuries, and 800 fatalities, and this number has increased in recent years. Drowsy driving is a major problem in the United States, but it is also incredibly preventable. We are all aware of the impact driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol can have on a driver, but many often underestimate the impact fatigue can have as well.
Here is what you need to know about the dangers of drowsy driving:
- Drowsy driving is comparable to drunk driving since sleep deprivation has a similar effect on the body. In fact, being awake for 18 hours straight is equivalent to having a blood alcohol level of .05, whereas the legal limit is .08. If you have been awake for a full 24 hours, however, it is equivalent to a blood alcohol level of .10.
- Similar to drunk driving, drowsy driving makes it difficult to pay attention to the road and will negatively impact how well you are able to react and make fast decisions.
- While drunk drivers often drive slowly and try to react to emergencies, drowsy drivers tend to nod off even while driving at high speeds and are often unable to brake in time or swerve if there is an obstacle or incident on the road.
If you feel drowsy or were not able to get a restful night of sleep, you should keep yourself and others safe by not driving. If you begin to feel drowsy while driving, pull over safely and take a 20-minute nap. The last thing you want to do is risk your life simply because you did not get enough sleep.
Georgetown Personal Injury Attorneys
If you were injured in a car accident caused by a fatigued driver, you have a right to pursue just compensation that will cover your medical expenses or other costs associated with the accident. At Goeing, Goeing & McQuinn, PLLC, our skilled Georgetown personal injury attorneys have more than 20 years of experience in the field and have successfully recovered millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements.
Call our firm today at (859) 757-4002 to schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable member of our team!