When a driver gets into a vehicle and turns the ignition key, they are making an unspoken commitment that they are in good health and are able to safely operate their vehicle. But as national car accident statistics show, there are too many people who get behind the wheel of a vehicle who are getting behind the wheel of a vehicle when they are too tired and end up putting themselves – and other commuters – at a high risk of being seriously injured or killed in a crash.
According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), drowsy driving causes more than 100,000 crashes a year, resulting in more than 1,500 deaths and another 70,000 injuries. Other statistics show one in six deadly fatal accidents involves a drowsy driver. And although over 96 percent of people say they are totally against allowing someone who is so tired to get behind the wheel of a vehicle, one in 10 drivers between the ages of 16 and 45 years old admit to driving drowsy once or twice a week.
Unfortunately, we live in a society where the majority of people do not get enough sleep every night. Medical research shows that most healthy adults need between seven to nine hours of sleep per night to function at their best. Losing even one hour of sleep can affect a person’s ability to think properly and respond quickly. It also compromises our cardiovascular health, energy balance, and ability to fight infections.
When a driver has not had enough sleep and gets behind the wheel, it can impact their driving in the following ways:
- Decreased coordination, which can impact steering and braking skills
- Impaired judgment, leading to dangerous mistakes and miscalculations
- Increases the odds of falling asleep behind the wheel
- Slowed reactions, making it harder to respond to unexpected events
- Watery eyes, seeing double, and other vision disturbances
How to Prove Fatigued Driving in a Car Accident
When a victim has been injured in a crash caused by another driver, they should consult with a Virginia Beach car accident attorney to find out what legal recourse they have. There are certain pieces of evidence that your attorney will look for to prove that the at-fault driver was driving fatigued. Police reports, witness statements, and crash scene data are all areas where the attorney can find the evidence needed. Ins some cases, an attorney may use the services of an accident reconstruction expert.
Some of the evidence that will show the other driver was driving drowsy include:
- The other driver was swerving from lane to lane before the crash
- The other driver was driving at erratic speeds before the crash
- Signs that the other driver lost control of their vehicle
Contact a Virginia Car Crash Attorney
If you have been injured in an accident caused by a drowsy driver, contact a Virginia car accident attorney to find out what legal options you may have against the driver who caused the crash. Our Va. personal injury attorneys have worked with many injured clients and have successfully obtained the financial damages they deserved for their pain and loss.
A victim who has been injured in a car accident caused by another driver may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, loss of income if they are unable to work while they recover, pain and suffering, and emotional trauma. If the victim is left with any kind of permanent disability, disfigurement, or scarring, they may also receive damages for those losses. Your attorney will evaluate your case and determine all the losses your injuries have caused and what dollar value these losses have.
Call Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp today to schedule a free and confidential consultation and find out what type of legal options you may have.
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