For years, we have all heard about the dangers of operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In the last few years, concerns with texting and driving have become newsworthy with many municipalities making it illegal. New studies now show that sleep deprived drivers are just as dangerous as drivers who have had three to four alcoholic drinks.
On December 6, 2016, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety released a report that revealed twenty-one percent of fatal crashes involved a sleep-deprived driver. The study indicated that people who slept for 4 hours or less were 11.5 percent more likely to get into a crash. Drivers who sleep between five to seven hours were 1.9 percent more likely to get into a crash. For drivers who get four or less hours of sleep per night, it is comparable to a person driving with a blood alcohol content/concentration of 0.12 to 0.15.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that roughly thirty-five percent of people get fewer than the recommended seven hours of sleep per night, and around twelve percent get five or less hours of sleep per night.
After a five year decline in deaths on the nation’s highways, 2015 proved to be the exact opposite. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s numbers indicate that the number of deaths on the road in 2015 was up 7.2 percent from 2014.
Undoubtedly, driving while suffering from sleep deprivation is something that has been around since the invention of cars, but now with the new statistical analysis, it cannot be denied that sleep deprivation is an extremely dangerous issue and is as dangerous as driving while legally intoxicated.
If you or someone you know has been injured by another’s negligence in a car accident, contact an experienced attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling 713-396-3964 or toll free at 800-594-4884.