Studies have shown that drowsy driving can be just as dangerous (and deadly!) as drunk driving. One study that Reuters discovered in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that driving while sleepy and driving while drunk showed no real difference in the brain. More than half of Americans have reported that they have driven drowsy in the last year.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also reported that nearly 100, 000 crashes that have been reported were due to drowsy drivers. This is alarming news considering that you will find more people on the road who are driving drowsy than driving drunk.
What happens to the brain when we are drowsy?
You may already know how alcohol affects the body as well as the brain. We move slower and cognitive functions such as reaction time, awareness, and coordination are significantly reduced. What is perhaps the most interesting of the finds in the Archives of Internal Medicine study was that most of the crashes that were observed were because drivers were not only drunk—but also drowsy.
Over the long term, sleep deprivation can be much more hazardous to the brain than one night of binge drinking.
Sleep deprivation has the following effects:
- Lowered sex drive
- Weight gain
- Health problems (e.g., heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes)
- Decreased attention, concentration, and problem-solving skills
Prevention is the number one remedy to help keep drivers and others on the road safe. 100, 000 crashes per year is a low estimate, considering the numbers of crashes that go unreported. Another disheartening fact is that it is often difficult to pinpoint blame or find out how much sleepiness attributed to the crash.
What should I do if I was hurt in a crash?
Sleeping habits are personal matters, and this is one of the elements that make it difficult to attribute a crash to “sleepiness” or “drowsiness.” Cases can and do move forward during the investigation and discovery phases. That is exactly the time to enlist an elite Springfield personal injury lawyer to look at your case. We use sophisticated research and courtroom technology in our investigations, which has helped us garner more than $7 billion in settlements and verdicts through the years. We know what it takes to win and prove that your crash occurred because the other driver was driving drowsy.
When you are ready, schedule your free case consultation with Strong Law, P.C.!