Research from multiple organizations has shown that drowsy driving is an issue for motorists in New York and throughout the country. According to data from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, there are 6,400 fatal crashes each year that are caused by drivers who were tired. A poll of 2,003 drivers conducted by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) found that 45% of Americans drive while fatigued.
Those who study this issue say that the best way to prevent drowsy driving is to get enough sleep before getting behind the wheel. It is also a good idea to not drive late at night or for long distances without a passenger. Ideally, everyone in the car who can drive will do so for at least a portion of a long road trip. Drivers should know that changing radio stations and rolling down the window will not actually help them stay awake.
Furthermore, caffeine is only a temporary solution for those who are struggling to stay awake. It is important to note that drowsy driving is similar to drunk driving in that it impairs a person’s ability to make decisions while operating a vehicle. Signs of excessive fatigue include frequent yawning, heavy eyelids and following too closely. Drifting into other lanes of traffic may also be a sign that a person is too tired to drive.
Individuals who are hurt by the actions of a negligent driver may be entitled to compensation for their injuries. This might be true whether an injured victim was another driver, a passenger in the car that caused the accident or a pedestrian. Compensation may help to pay for medical bills or make up for other financial losses. An attorney might be able to help a person pursue compensation in court or through a settlement.