While distracted or impaired driver-related accidents are commonplace, it might be more challenging to identify drivers who were too fatigued to safely operate a motor vehicle. In short, there is no test for tiredness. In this way, the data can be subjective. While these statistics are not precise, crash investigators can look for clues that drowsiness contributed to a motor vehicle collision. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) carefully examined crash data from 2017 and estimated that 91,000 police-reported collisions involved drowsy drivers. In the accidents that were identified, an estimated 50,000 people were injured and nearly 800 fatalities occurred.
- Avoid caffeinated drinks: It might seem like the right thing to do at the time, but drinking coffee, soda or an energy drink could give you a boost of energy at first … but lead to a significant dip in energy shortly after. The period of alertness might drain what little energy you have left ultimately leading to “micro sleep” or brief losses of consciousness.
- Take a nap: If you feel yourself getting sleepy, it is wise to simply pull over to a safe, well-lit area such as a designated rest stop. Even a 20-minute nap can be refreshing and give you the energy needed to get home safely.
- Explore other options: From ride sharing apps to public transportation, it might be better to simply turn the driving responsibilities over to a professional.
Depending on numerous factors, a motor vehicle collision can result in a wide range of serious injuries. Vehicle occupants can suffer broken bones, amputation, spinal cord damage, head trauma and paralysis. Distracted, drowsy or inattentive driving accidents should be easy to prevent. Drivers must realize when they are a hazard to others around them and make better decisions about safety.
If you were injured in a motor vehicle collision caused by a drowsy, negligent or distracted driver, do not hesitate to contact an experienced lawyer for guidance and representation. At Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, PLLC, we have helped injured New Yorkers since 1952 – and we’re ready to fight for you full and fair monetary compensation.