A long day or late night can lead to disaster if a fatigued person is driving and causes a motor vehicle accident. Some people in the Chicago metro suburbs may think that being tired does not affect their ability to drive too badly. However, this is not true. Drowsy driving is dangerous, and something we should avoid.
The numbers surrounding drowsy driving are staggering. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in 25 adult drivers admitted to falling asleep while behind the wheel in the past 30 days. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that in 2013, around 72,000 motor vehicle accidents resulting in 44,000 injuries and 800 deaths were caused by drowsy drivers.
Of course, drivers who do not get a sufficient amount of sleep can cause drowsy driving crashes. However, there are other ways a driver could become drowsy. Drivers of commercial vehicles are often incentivized to make as many deliveries as possible as quickly as possible, leading them to continue driving even if they are tired. Those who work night shifts or long shifts may also be too tired to safely drive. If a driver has a sleep disorder that is going untreated, this could also lead to driver fatigue. Certain prescription and over-the-counter medications could also make a person sleepy and unable to safely drive.
If you are in a crash caused by a drowsy driver, you may find your entire life has been turned upside down. Serious injuries could be prohibitively costly both to your health and finances. Emotional distress, lost wages and pain and suffering could also result if you are the victim of an accident caused by a drowsy driver. People who find themselves in such situations may want to seek the advice of a professional so they can understand what their rights and options are under the law.