Whether it is a crowded highway, a fast-moving county road or pedestrian traffic around city streets, drivers must always worry about their surroundings. People sharing the road could be distracted, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or too fatigued to react safely. Unfortunately, drowsy driving has grown to become a significant problem for Connecticut drivers.
A driver’s fatigue can be traced back to a broad array of reasons that can range from lifestyle choices or medicinal side effects. With a society geared toward longer work hours and longer commutes, it is no surprise that drive-thru meals and additional electronic devices added to a vehicle’s dashboard all work together to allow a driver to stay behind the wheel for longer stretches of time. Unfortunately, this can lead to increasing instances of drowsy driving and unsafe roadways.
While the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) notes that it is difficult to nail down concrete statistics about drowsy driving – there is no chemical test for drowsiness, for example, and fatigue is often not reported to police after a collision – they have developed estimates. Tied to numerous factors, the NHTSA estimates that 91,000 police-reported crashes in 2017 involved drowsy drivers. The results of these crashes were staggering – an estimated 50,000 vehicle occupant injuries and nearly 800 deaths.
From drivers suffering from lack of sleep due to a newborn infant in the house to a driver struggling with working a full-time job after putting in college coursework hours, these individuals are hard-pressed to find solutions. As challenging as it might be, they must seek alternatives to keeping the roads around them safe. Drowsy driving can lead to serious collisions with catastrophic injuries.
If you or a loved one was involved in a motor vehicle collision caused by a negligent, distracted or drowsy driver, it is crucial that you work with a skilled legal professional as soon as possible.