According to a poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation in 2005, about 60 percent of adult drivers have reported driving a vehicle while feeling drowsy and that more than one-third of those polled (about 103 million people) have fallen asleep while behind the wheel. Approximately 11 million drivers have admitted that they have been in an accident or near accident because they dozed off or were too tired to drive, the Sleep in America poll found.
These statistics are alarming. Fatigued driving accidents are easily prevented by simply driving a car while well-rested. If you or a loved one has been involved in an auto accident caused by a fatigued driver, you deserve both compassion and compensation for your losses.
To begin exploring your legal options, please complete the Free Case Review form to the right.
Fatigued Driving Statistics
Fatigue-related accidents are most common among young drivers, especially men, adults with children and shift workers. According to a poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation in 2002:
- Adults between 18 and 29 years old are much more likely to drive while drowsy compared to other age groups.
- Men are more likely than women to drive when tired (56 percent to 45 percent) and are almost twice as likely as women to fall asleep behind the wheel.
- Adults with children are more likely to drive tired than those without children (59 percent vs. 45 percent).
- Those who sleep six to seven hours a night are twice as likely to be involved in a crash as those who get eight hours of sleep or more a night. Those who sleep less than five hours a night increase their risk of being involved in a wreck four to five times.
Dangers of Drowsy Driving
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 100,000 police-reported accidents are the direct result of driver fatigue each year, amounting in an estimated 1,550 fatalities, 71,000 injuries and $12.5 billion in monetary losses.
These numbers are rough estimates due to a variety of reasons, including the following:
- There is no test to determine the level of sleepiness the driver experiences as there is no intoxication involved.
- State reporting practices are inconsistent and there is little or no police training in identifying drowsiness as a contributing factor in an accident.
- Self-reporting is unreliable.
- Fatigue may play a role in collisions that are attributed to other causes, like driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- According to data from Australia, England, Finland and other European nations, all of whom have more consistent crash reporting procedures than the United States, fatigued driving accounts for 10 to 30 percent of all crashes.
Contact an Experienced Fatigued Driver Accident Attorney in Alabama
Studies have shown that being awake for 18 hours produced impairment equal to a blood alcohol concentration of .05. A BAC of .08 is considered legally drunk. Sleep deprivation and fatigue make lapses of attention more likely to occur and may play a major role in contributing to an accident.
At Citrin Law Firm, our attorneys have the experience and resources necessary to successfully litigate an Alabama fatigued driver claim. If you were injured in an accident caused by a drowsy driver, we urge you to contact our firm as soon as possible as you may be eligible to recover damages related to the crash.
With an office in Mobile, our firm is dedicated to fighting for the rights of all those who have been injured by the actions or negligence of another in Mobile and Baldwin Counties.
Our personal injury law firm operates on a contingency fee basis. This means that if you choose to hire our attorneys, there is never any cost to you until we obtain a favorable outcome for your claim, whether through a settlement with the other parties involved or by a jury verdict.
If you are unsure if you have cause to file a fatigued driver lawsuit, contact an experienced car accident lawyer to schedule a FREE case evaluation. During an evaluation, one of our lawyers will assess the merits of your claim and offer guidance on how to best pursue legal recourse for your losses.
For more information on the legal rights which may be available to fatigued driver accident injury victims and their families or to schedule a confidential, no-obligation consultation with a member of our legal team, please complete the Free Case Review form on this page.