AAA research into the consequences of drowsy driving
Indiana residents who routinely get less than seven hours of sleep each night may be alarmed by the contents of a report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. Published on Dec. 6, it deals with the link between driver fatigue and traffic accident rates, and it indicates that motorists who sleep only four or five hours during the 24 hours prior to getting behind the wheel crash about four times as often as fully-rested drivers.
Several studies have come to the conclusion that drowsy driving a can be just as dangerous as driving while under the influence, and the AAA researchers found that even an hour or two of extra sleep can make driving far safer. According to the AAA report, motorists who slept for five or six hours before driving only crashed about twice as often as rested drivers.
The research is important because about one-third of Americans say that they sleep for less than seven hours each night. In addition to higher traffic accident rates, fatigue has been linked with weight gain and mental issues like depression. Individuals who wish to lower their chances of being involved in a drowsy driving accident are advised to take naps before driving to make up for lost sleep.
Pursuing civil remedies on behalf of those injured in fatigued driving accidents can be challenging for personal injury attorneys. The shock of a collision often rouses even the drowsiest drivers, and accident investigators may not always be able to pinpoint fatigue as the cause. When brakes are not applied prior to a crash and distraction or fatigue seem likely, attorneys may study police reports, witness statements, cellphone records and vehicle black box data prior to filing lawsuits on behalf of accident victims.