Have you ever had trouble keeping your eyes open, experienced frequent yawning, or had trouble keeping your head up while behind the wheel? These symptoms indicate fatigue. Fatigued driving is an unsafe driving practice that often occurs as a result of a lack of sleep. The body has a biological need for sleep and when that need is neglected, fatigue sets in. Driver fatigue is considered impaired driving as motorists’ critical driving capabilities needed to safely operate a vehicle are severely hindered. Unfortunately, many collisions that occur on the road are the result of fatigued driving. According to statistics, an estimated 328,000 fatigued driving accidents occur annually. This is a large number considering this unsafe driving practice is preventable. If a motorist experiences any symptoms of fatigue such as drifting out of their lane, having difficulty remembering the last few miles they drove, missing road signs, or difficulty maintaining their speed, they must get off the road to ensure everyone’s safety including their own. In the unfortunate event that you have been injured in an accident as a result of fatigued driving, contact one of our qualified and skilled Washington, D.C. Car Accident Lawyers who can help you understand your rights and navigate your legal options. In addition, please continue reading to learn about the dangers of fatigued driving.
What is fatigued driving?
Driver fatigue can be caused by sleep deprivation and working long hours. When a motorist has inadequate rest, they are more likely to misjudge changing road conditions. In addition, fatigued driving causes motorists to have slower reaction times and they are unable to make sound decisions. This is because motorists are not able to concentrate on their surroundings or the road. This unsafe driving practice is similar to driving under the influence of alcohol. According to statistics, driving for more than 20 consecutive hours is equivalent to driving with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% (the legal limit). With that being said, fatigued driving is extremely dangerous and often leads to catastrophic accidents. Motorists must refrain from operating a vehicle while they are experiencing fatigue as it diminishes their critical driving skills.
Who is at risk of driver fatigue?
Anyone who lacks sufficient sleep is at risk of driver fatigue. However, it is most commonly seen in commercial truck drivers as their job requires them to travel for several consecutive hours with no rest. The brain needs sleep to function properly. If a motorist does not maintain healthy sleeping habits, they will be at a higher risk of experiencing driver fatigue. Motorists must have sufficient sleep before they get behind the wheel. If they neglect to do so, it increases their likelihood of being involved in a collision.
If you have been injured in a collision due to fatigued driving, don’t hesitate to speak with one of our determined and adept team members. Our firm is committed to helping our clients seek reasonable compensation for their damages.