Pennsylvania drivers are undoubtedly accustomed to seeing other motorists who are operating their vehicles erratically. In most instances, they might be under the impressions that the drivers of these vehicles are under the influence, are using their smartphones or are simply reckless. However, new research is indicating that the danger of a car accident increases with the less sleep a driver has gotten the night before. This is an important consideration as the accident investigation commences and those who were injured or lost a loved one seek compensation.
A report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Study says that drivers who have only slept for five to six hours within the prior 24 are at almost twice the risk for an auto accident. Drivers who got between four and five hours of sleep have four times the risk of a car accident. This is the same as someone whose blood alcohol content surpasses the legal limit. The executive director of AAA says that drivers cannot be deprived of sleep and expect to be able to operate the vehicle safely. This is of significant concern because more than 35 percent of Americans who took part in the survey stated that, on average, they slept for fewer than seven hours each night.
The AAA study used a sample of nearly 4,600 accidents that included more than 7,200 drivers. In these accidents at least one of the vehicles had to be towed from the scene and emergency crews were called. The drivers were asked how much sleep that had gotten in the previous 24 hours. Those who had six to seven hours were 1.3 times as likely to be in an accident. Those who got five to six yours were 1.9 times as likely. With four to five hours, they were 4.3 times as likely. And with fewer than four hours, they were 11.5 times more likely.
When out on the road, there are many different dangers that a driver must be aware of. With this study, the lack of sleep on the part of other drivers is added as something to consider. When there is a car accident, there can be injuries that require hospitalization and other treatments or it can lead to a fatality. Those who were affected need to make certain they are protected and a full investigation takes place to determine why it happened. Speaking to an attorney about pursuing litigation after a car crash can provide guidance and assistance in moving forward and gathering evidence.
Source: Huffington Post, "Missing Just 2 Hours Of Sleep Quadruples Your Risk Of A Car Accident," Sarah DiGiuilo, Dec. 9, 2016