Drowsy driving is often as dangerous as distracted driving. Sleep deprivation can significantly impair multiple abilities, leaving much more room for operational error behind the wheel. If you or a loved one suffered injuries sustained in an auto accident with a drowsy driver, you might have a claim for compensation, so talk with a Kansas City car accident lawyer to learn more.
How Sleep Deprivation Makes Driving Dangerous
Yes, there’s always a chance that if someone is too tired, they’ll fall asleep behind the wheel. However, the primary hazards of drowsy driving are how a lack of sleep greatly hinders driving skills.
The less sleep a motorist has, the more reduced their cognitive abilities are. This means they have a decreased attention span. Major sleep deprivation or drowsiness also impairs their reaction time, making it harder to avoid a hazard or collision. Driving late at night after a long day compounds these effects. Some research even suggests that the symptoms of sleep deprivation are similar to those of being drunk.
Sleep deprivation isn’t the only cause of drowsy driving. Certain prescription medications and illicit drugs make people fatigued, too. This is why some medication labels explicitly state not to drive while using the drug. It’s also no surprise that those who work night shifts or drive long hours for work are more prone to drowsy driving accidents.
Consequences of Drowsy Driving
Drowsy driving accidents cause hundreds of deaths each year, and individuals who survive often suffer severe injuries and expensive medical bills. If you or someone you love experienced an accident with a fatigued motorist, there’s often a lot of hassle involved juggling medical treatments, feeling overwhelmed by all the bills and, if still out of work recovering, wondering how you’ll regain financial stability. Depending on how severe your injuries are, you may also be dealing with lifelong disabilities or chronic pain. These outcomes can drastically change your life.
The good news is you might be able to sue for compensation if you have enough evidence. Consider hiring a knowledgeable injury attorney. They’ll understand the burden of proof required to demonstrate that drowsiness was the cause of the other driver’s negligence and how they’re responsible for your accident, subsequent injuries, and related expenses.