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Drowsy driving is more dangerous than you may think

On behalf of Noland Law Firm, LLC posted in car accidents on Friday, April 10, 2015.

We have all probably driven at one time or another when we were a little tired. You may have experienced you eyelids drop or flutter and you shrug it off. Sure, you may have swerved a little, but nothing serious. After all, its not as if your were drunk.

Actually, it may be. Drowsy driving is a serious problem in the U.S. and is only now beginning to receive the attention it deserves. How big of a problem? It is estimated that there are 328,000 crashes every year caused by drowsy drivers. That works out to about 37 crashes every hour of every day of the year. Or more than one accident every two minutes. 

Almost 110,000 of those accidents cause injuries to those involved and 6,400 are killed in those crashes or about 17 every day. Imagine the headlines if 17 people died every day from some exotic tropical disease?

Surprisingly, the largest group affected by drowsy driving is teen drivers. This may be due to their lack of experience behind the wheel and their failure to recognize when they are too tired to drive, but they are 80 percent more likely to be involved in a drowsy driving accident than other drivers are.

It can also be a problem for many truck drivers, who may be overweight and suffer from sleep apnea. Self-awareness is the best way to avoid a drowsy driving accident. You need to get enough sleep every night and recognize when you are too tired to safely operate a vehicle.

While it may be inconvenient to stop and grab a few extra hours of sleep, it is far cheaper than running your car off the road or colliding with another vehicle because of your fatigue. Your life and the lives of others are worth more than the cost of a few hours of sleep.

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