Study Drowsy Driving Similar to Drunk Driving More Common

A report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimated that 25,580 people died and many more were injured in 2012 auto accidents from January through September. Being prepared before an accident can enable a victim to obtain all the necessary information that will be helpful to their case.

Consulting a Clayton County attorney after an auto accident enhances a victim's ability to receive a reasonable settlement. If you have been injured in an automobile accident you should discuss your case with an accident attorney at Shane Smith Law.

Reliable data regarding drowsy driving and its impact on auto accidents and fatalities is unavailable because many investigating law enforcement agencies do not report it. However, according to a study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, drowsy driving is more common than drunk driving and causes similar impairments. The study indicated that as many as 25 percent of drivers recently drove while drowsy. Drivers between 19 and 24 were the most likely to report driving while drowsy (33 percent), while the oldest drivers (ages 75+) and the youngest (ages 16 to 18) were the least likely to report having done so.

The study indicated that drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as driving while drunk. The AAA study stated that 95 percent of drivers agree that driving while drowsy is dangerous, yet 41 percent of those surveyed said they had driven while drowsy at least once.

Drivers may notice the following warning signs of drowsy driving:

  • Failure to recall the last few miles traveled/tunnel vision ("zoning")
  • Difficulty keeping eyes open, particularly when stopped
  • Drifting out of a lane
  • Yawning repeatedly
  • Accidentally tailgating other vehicles or falling far behind another car
  • Rolling through stop signs

If you or someone you know has been hurt in an auto accident, meet with a Clayton County auto accident lawyer at Shane Smith Law. We can obtain the relevant evidence including police reports.