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Drowsy driving may be the most underreported cause of car crashes

How many times have you gotten up in the morning feeling more tired than you did when you went to bed? Perhaps you can’t count the number of times. If so, you are like many other people here in Louisiana. It seems as though many people live in a constant state of sleep deprivation.

Most people dismiss the fact that their drowsiness could create a dangerous situation while driving. After all, it’s not as if they got behind the wheel drunk. Right? Unfortunately, driving drowsy does put everyone at risk. Some sources say that drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving, and with good reason.

A driver doesn’t have to fall asleep to be dangerous

Many people will dismiss their drowsiness as just part of life. They may feel that as long as they aren’t falling asleep behind the wheel, they should be able to safely operate a vehicle. The problem is that driving without adequate sleep can cause the following:

  • Slowed reaction time
  • Lack of attention
  • Diminished judgment
  • Diminished decision making

These same types of behaviors are indicative of drunk driving. In fact, some drowsy drivers may be mistaken for driving drunk. It would be a mistake to underestimate the severity of this problem.

The drivers most at risk for falling asleep while driving

Certain groups of people run the risk of causing an accident due to sleepiness than others. Below are the groups most at risk:

  • Commercial drivers
  • Drivers with untreated sleep disorders
  • Shift workers
  • Drivers who use medications that cause sleepiness
  • Drivers who don’t get enough sleep

Most people require at least seven hours of sleep in order to function properly and safely operate a vehicle.

When a drowsy driver causes an accident

If you happened to have the misfortune to come across a drowsy driver who failed to obey the rules of the road, you probably ended up in an accident in which you suffered injuries. As you worked toward your recovery, you more than likely incurred a significant amount of medical expenses while losing income because you couldn’t work until you recovered enough to do so.

You may be able to recover compensation for these types of damages, along with others such as pain and suffering by filing a personal injury claim. Knowing where to start is often a challenge. In order to gather the evidence needed in an effort to prove that the other driver caused your injuries, you may need help. Fortunately, the legal resources you need are readily available.

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