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Drowsy Driving Is a Growing Problem, Reports National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Posted By Tom Rhodes Law Firm P.C. | 4-May-2015

Have you ever driven drowsy? Or worse yet, fallen asleep while driving? Believe it or not, you may have fallen asleep while driving, but just may not have been aware. You see, when the brain is operating on such little energy to work with, it is possible for it to “fall asleep” in a split second, even though your eyes are wide open and you are fully aware of the road.

That is why drowsy driving can and does happen so often, resulting in accident and even injuries. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there are reportedly over 83, 000 car crashes, with more than 1, 000 deaths as a result of those crashes every year—all due to drowsy driving.

However, AAA is reporting that this is a highly conservative estimate; their own studies have shown that there could be as many 328, 000 crashes and 6, 000 deaths!

If you are interested in reading the entire study from AAA, you can view it here.

How widespread has the problem become?

We must first discuss how drowsy driving truly affects the body. Most people view drowsiness as only a minor barrier. An eight-hour day at work, for example, and an hour-long commute may be a trip that someone takes every single day, but not realize that their body is worn out and sleep-deprived.

Sleep deprivation can have the following effects on the body:

  • Slower reaction time
  • Decreased ability to focus
  • Poorer judgment
  • Blurry or diminished vision
  • Loss of coordination

What is certainly surprising is that many of these effects share the same characteristics as drunk driving, which only goes to show that drowsy driving can and does have deadly effects. This is especially problematic among truck drivers, as research by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration found that a large number of truck accidents were due to a truck driver falling asleep. This is due to a variety of factors, such as having an erratic work schedule, thus an erratic sleeping schedule, and also trying to make deliveries on time.

How should I resolve my case if I was injured by a drowsy driver?

An accident is an accident, either way you cut it. It can be easily proven that a driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, where negligence lies. There are breath tests, searching for open alcohol containers, and other bits of evidence available. However, pinpointing a drowsy driver is not always so clear-cut, since many individuals do not realize they have fallen asleep, referring to our earlier point in the beginning.

That is why you should leave the investigation up to an experienced San Antonio car accident lawyer. Tom Rhodes Law Firm P.C. has been helping many victims of injury and accident for over 30 years. We have been able to gain many successful results and winning verdicts for our clients, and we are prepared to look over your case thoroughly in order to determine what your rights are and hold those who caused your injuries responsible.

Put us to work and contact us today to schedule a free case consultation!

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