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Is drowsiness the root cause of a crash?

| Feb 26, 2021 | Blog |

Dangerous driving behaviors often inflict great harm upon everyone on the road. One of the most common of these behaviors is drowsy driving. But how does drowsiness affect a driver? And just what makes it dangerous?

In understanding these questions, you can make driving a safer experience.

Physical effects of drowsiness

The Sleep Foundation discusses how drowsiness can impact driver safety. Drowsiness affects the body in a way similar to imbibing intoxicating substances. You often suffer from similar effects, like:

  • Slowed reflexes
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Trouble spotting danger
  • Poor reaction time

On top of that, drowsy drivers risk falling asleep at the wheel. Even microsleeping is dangerous. This happens when a driver loses consciousness for a few seconds at a time. It can happen as quickly as a blink. Unfortunately, that is all the time needed for a bad accident especially on the freeway. Many drivers who drive off the road or cross the meridian fall asleep at the wheel first. Rear-end crashes are common, too.

The failure of wakefulness tips

There are not many ways for drivers to combat drowsiness, either. Most wakefulness tips and tricks do not work in the long term. Drivers who depend on them find themselves woefully unprepared for how often they continue to nod off at the wheel. Many drivers admit this is an issue, too. Over a quarter of all drivers in a survey by the American Automobile Association (AAA) claimed to have a hard time keeping their eyes open while driving at least once in the last month.

These factors combine to make a deadly cocktail. If you suffered injury in a crash with one of these drivers, consider talking to a legal expert. They can help you decide how to proceed.