A study of driving behavior by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that just over 4 percent of adults admit to having fallen asleep while driving.
The study, published in the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, included data from 147,000 adults in 19 states and the District of Columbia. Study participants were asked detailed questions about their daily activities, including their driving, sleep and work habits. The study reported that less than 2 percent of adults between 18 and 44 years old admitted to driving while drowsy. By comparison, over 5 percent of study participants over 65 years old admitted to driving while drowsy.
In 2009, approximately 30,000 people were involved in car crashes due to drowsy driving and 730 died, according to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The NHTSA estimates that about 16 percent of all vehicular fatalities and approximately 13 percent of accidents requiring hospitalization involve drowsy drivers.
Russ Rader, a spokesman for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, said, "Drowsy driving is a lot like distracted driving: it's not something you can outlaw and solve the problem. Technology may help. High-tech, crash-avoidance systems can alert drivers to hazards or even take action autonomously if your attention wanders or you're sleepy and may prevent a lot of crashes in the future. These systems are always on alert and never get tired like people do."
If you or someone you know has been hurt in a car crash, call a Clayton County auto accident lawyer at the Law Offices of Shane Smith at 888-927-6955 and ask to schedule a free legal consultation.