24 Hours, 7 Days a Week
18 Locations

Preventing Boston Drowsy Driving Collisions

Massachusetts auto accident attorneyDriving while fatigued has become a major problem on U.S. roads. The National Sleep Foundation reveals that the annual costs of drowsy driving crashes totals about $12.5 billion. There are 1,500 people dying annually in the U.S. due to collisions involving fatigued driving, and there are another 71,000 people getting hurt.

Drivers generally know that drowsy driving is dangerous, and yet many people choose to get behind the wheel despite being fatigued. If you or a loved one becomes involved in a collision with a motorist you suspect was driving drowsy, you should consult with a personal injury lawyer for help pursuing a damage claim.

The Risks of Drowsy Driving

Driving while drowsy is something that people know is dangerous. In fact, according to Cheat Sheet, 60 percent of respondents to a recent survey said that they think drowsy driving should be illegal. The majority of states have not expressly criminalized this behavior. However, Cheat Sheet reports that New Jersey has made clear that drowsy drivers can be charged with reckless driving and Arkansas has made clear that drowsy drivers can be charged with negligent homicide if they are fatigued and cause a deadly crash.

Drivers should still make the responsible choice even if the law does not expressly prohibit drowsy driving. Unfortunately, they are not doing so. CarInsurance.com recently surveyed 2,000 motorists and found that around half admitted that they had driven despite concerns about safety. Of the motorists who said they'd gotten behind the wheel at a time when they shouldn't, a full 68 percent said that the problem that they drove despite being concerned about fatigue.

This should come as no surprise since the National Sleep Foundation found that 60 percent of drivers admitted to driving drowsy in the prior year and 1/3 of motorists said they had actually fallen asleep behind the wheel. The National Sleep Foundation also conducted a survey of adults to find out how many hours per night they slept. The results showed that:

  • 29 percent got six hours of sleep or less.
  • 41.31 percent got between six and seven hours of sleep.
  • 21.48 percent got between seven and eight hours of sleep.
  • 8.21 percent got eight hours of sleep or more.

This is a problem. Psych Central reports that most adults require at least seven to eight hours of sleep per night. A person who does not get enough sleep will begin to build up a "sleep debt" and "eventually your body will demand that the debt be repaid."

A person who doesn't get enough sleep, especially on a regular basis, suffers health effects that impact his ability to drive. A fatigued driver may have delayed reaction times, impaired cognitive function, and impaired judgment. In fact, a fatigued driver is handicapped in ways very similar to an intoxicated driver and presents a similar risk on the road.

Drivers need to understand that it is extremely dangerous to drive fatigued and they need to act on this knowledge by avoiding getting behind the wheel drunk and by working to get a sufficient amount of sleep.

Boston accident victims may contact the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone at 1-800-WIN-WIN-1

Categories: Posts

If you were injured or a loved one was injured or killed in an accident in Boston, Worcester, Springfield or Holyoke, a personal injury lawyer can fight to help you obtain compensation you deserve. At the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone, serving Massachusetts, our personal injury attorneys have an impressive record of trial verdicts and settlements.

Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone