Dangers of Drowsy DrivingMarch 15, 2018
It is a well-known and widely-accepted fact that drunk driving is extremely dangerous and continues to be one of the main causes of car accidents in this country. Distracted driving has also become a major problem as people continue to talk and text on their smartphones while driving. Drowsy driving, however, is just as dangerous, yet too many people are either not aware of the risk involved, or they simply do it anyway. Unfortunately, this can have devastating consequences if a motorist nods off or falls asleep at the wheel.
According to a AAA study, drowsy driving is a factor in nearly 10 percent of all car accidents, which is significantly more than past federal estimates, which indicated that only two percent of accidents were caused by drowsy driving. Specifically, AAA found that drowsiness was a key factor in 9.5 percent of all wrecks and played a significant role in 10.8 percent of accidents that resulted in major property damage.
To understand why there is such a significant difference between the findings from the previous federal studies and the results from the AAA study, AAA developed the most comprehensive, in-depth research study of its kind. The study’s focus was to gain a better understanding of drowsy driving in the United States, and why it remains a big problem. Using footage from dashboard cameras, researchers from AAA looked for some of the telltale signs of drowsiness, including periods of time when the driver’s eyes would begin to droop or close during the three-minute period leading up to the accident. The footage provided real-time information from vehicles involved in over 700 crashes.
Why Drowsy Driving is Underreported
According to AAA, drowsy driving is one of the most underreported safety issues in the United States. This is likely due to the following:
- Drivers do not want to admit that they were drowsy at the time of the accident.
- Drowsy driving is difficult to measure or confirm, unlike drunk driving and distracted driving, such as texting and driving.
- Drowsy drivers are unlikely to show signs of drowsiness after an accident when adrenaline is running high and they no longer feel fatigued.
The executive director for the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, warned that drowsy driving is a much bigger problem than people think, or that federal estimates suggest. Unfortunately, when drivers do not obtain enough sleep, and they get behind the wheel, it can have devastating, even fatal consequences for the drivers and other motorists on the road. This in-depth analysis helps us determine whether a driver was drowsy in the moments prior to the accident.
Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Victims of Drowsy Driving Accidents
If you have been injured in a car accident involving a drowsy driver, the Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton are on your side. We take drowsy driving just as seriously as other wrecks, including drunk driving and distracted driving. Protecting your rights and securing the maximum financial compensation you deserve are our top priorities. We will not stop fighting for you until you are completely satisfied. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent car accident victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.