Dangers of Driving While Fatigued
Recent studies have determined that driving while drowsy could be the cause of more automobile accidents than previously figured. The dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol are widely known, and the dangers of driving while under the influence of medical marijuana are gaining awareness, but these new studies suggest that drivers should also be aware of the dangers of driving while drowsy. These studies advise that driving while fatigued can cause severe car accident injuries.
Prevalence of Drowsy Driving
Studies done by The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute have found drowsy driving to be much more prevalent than previous studies documented in the Insurance Journal Report. The previous studies used methods such as surveys, driving tests, and driving simulations to determine that driver fatigue caused about three percent of car accidents. But the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute study used more natural techniques that would better represent the dangers of drowsy driving in real-life situations. They did this by using video cameras and car monitoring technology to observe drivers in the Washington DC area.
This study, which observed every day commuters, found that 20% of car accidents are related to driver fatigue. This was determined by monitoring signs of drowsiness before the car accident. Signs of fatigue include heavy eyelids, head nodding, and increasingly relaxed facial muscles. In addition, the study also found that adults ages 18-20 were more prone to being involved in an accident caused by drowsy driving.
How to Reduce Driver Fatigue Auto Accidents
Driving while drowsy impairs your judgment, awareness, and reaction time the same way drugs and alcohol do. Because of this, everyone should make an effort to reduce their likelihood of driving while fatigued to avoid car and motorcycle accidents.
Most drowsy driving accidents occur between midnight – 6:00 a.m., and 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. This is because most people have a biological clock that causes them to become drowsy in the afternoons and late at night.
To reduce your chances of causing a car accident due to fatigue:
- Don’t drive if you feel drowsy,
- Sleep for longer than six hours per night,
- Drive with a passenger to keep you alert,
- Pull over and take a 20-minute power nap if you feel fatigued, and
- Schedule breaks for long trips over two hours or 100 miles.
Seeking an Attorney for Auto Accident Cases Involving Driver Fatigue
Auto accidents caused by driver fatigue can be complicated because there is no standard way to prove that the driver who caused the accident was fatigued. However, driving while drowsy is still a negligent act and any damages caused by that negligence should be rectified. A skilled personal injury attorney can help you sort through the complex proceedings of a driver fatigue auto accident. And the attorneys at Lieser Law Firm will work diligently to get you the compensation you deserve.