Drowsy Driving: A Growing Problem Across the United States
Drowsy driving takes place every day across the U.S., becoming even more of a major problem every day on our roads. This act takes place when drivers combine the act of driving with sleepiness. It can happen when a driver has not been sleeping enough and also if they are suffering from an untreated sleep disorder, taking a medication that makes them sleepy, or after they were drinking alcohol. You never know when you will become tired, especially when you are staring at the roadway for a long period of time. If you’re feeling drowsy, you might be more inclined to pay less attention to the road, gain a slow reaction time, and experience an overall impact on your ability to make good decisions.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that around 72,000 crashes took place in 2013, 800 of which led to fatalities. Drowsy driving can leave a serious impact that many people do not realize until it is too late.
The Impact of Drowsy Driving
Drowsy driving is actually quite similar to the act of driving while intoxicated. Did you know that driving while tired can affect your reaction times and awareness of the roadway? This means that you might be more prone to ignoring road hazards and sustaining your attention to what is happening in front of you. If you drive for more than 20 hours without sleep, this is the equivalent of driving with a BAC of .08%.
As you can see, driving while fatigued is incredibly dangerous and this is why many states have instilled initiatives to work toward a world without drowsy driving. However, in the event that you are involved in one of these accidents, you want to know what you can do.
How Can You Prove a Driver Was Driving Drowsy?
Perhaps one of the most difficult aspects is proving that a driver was drowsy at the time of your accident. If the driver wakes up after the accident, how do you explain to police that you believe they were driving drowsy at the time and didn’t come over the center line due to another reason? Here are some ways that you can prove this:
- If you can show that there were no skid marks at the scene, this will tell police that the driver did not brake before the accident. This could provide evidence that they slammed into your vehicle full-force because they nodded off to sleep.
- Perhaps you can provide evidence that the driver was awake for a long period of time. Maybe they admitted that they had been working long shifts at work or they were taking a long trip across state lines.
- A witness might have seen the driver sleeping at the time of the crash.
How Our Attorneys Can Help
Drowsy driving accidents can happen in the blink of an eye when somebody accidentally nods off at the wheel. Luckily, you have many legal rights under West Virginia law and our highly skilled attorneys will fight tirelessly to help you protect your rights during this difficult time. At Katz Kantor Stonestreet & Buckner, we understand that you might be feeling lost and overwhelmed but you don’t have to stand alone when it comes to receiving damages. Contact us to find out how we can assist you in your time of need at 304-431-4050.