WCNC in Charlotte, North Carolina reported on November 29, 2013 that a teenage driver was killed in an accident in Gaston County when his car struck a sign on South Point Road. Investigators reported that it appeared the driver had fallen asleep at the wheel. Four passengers in the car all were also asleep during the accident. Two of the passengers suffered serious injuries and two others reportedly suffered minor injuries.
According to studies, only about one in five drivers pulls over to nap when they feel sleepy. The National Sleep Foundation wrote a 2005 report that found that well over one-half of adult drivers have said that they drove a vehicle in the past year even though they felt drowsy. A surprising one-third have even admitted to falling asleep while driving. Four percent of drivers admit that dozing while driving has caused an accident.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that dozing causes 100,000 accidents yearly including 1,550 deaths. Unfortunately, there is no test available like a Blood Alcohol Test to test someone for drowsiness though of course, in some cases alcohol can cause drowsiness. Studies also show that sleep fatigue can cause the same types of problems as drivers with high alcohol content.
Many of those who drive while drowsy or sleep are teenagers. The statistics also show that men and those with children are more likely to drive drowsy than women and those without children. Sleep fatigue can cause drivers to react slower, to drive faster, and to have less patience on the road. Most sleep accidents occur in the morning hours and on long, boring roads.
The consequences for driving while sleepy can be severe. In this case, the driver was killed and two passengers were seriously hurt.
If you’ve been hurt by a drowsy or sleepy driver, contact motor vehicle lawyer Joe Miller at Joe Miller Law, Ltd., by calling (888) 694-1671 and learn more about how he can put more than 25 years of experience to work for you.