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Protecting Accident Victims Throughout Western Pennsylvania.

How can drowsiness influence a catastrophic car accident?

On Behalf of | Nov 3, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

In the relentless rush of modern life, many people must juggle various responsibilities and obligations, often at the expense of a good night’s sleep. Unfortunately, the consequences of sleep deprivation can extend far beyond mere fatigue, especially when one is behind the wheel of a car.

Drowsiness, the silent and often underestimated danger, can significantly influence the occurrence of catastrophic car accidents.

Slower reactions

The combination of drowsiness and driving creates a lethal cocktail that jeopardizes not only the well-being of the driver but also the safety of others on the road. When an individual is sleep-deprived, their reaction times slow down and their cognitive abilities face impairment.

This compromised state of alertness can lead to poor decision-making, a decreased ability to assess and react to potential hazards and a heightened risk of veering off the road or colliding with other vehicles.

Erratic decisions

As the body yearns for rest, the brain valiantly battles to maintain focus on the road. Studies have shown that drowsy driving can be as dangerous as driving under the influence of alcohol. Just like intoxicated drivers, who caused 35% of all deadly vehicle crashes in America in 2020, a drowsy driver may exhibit erratic behavior and struggle to stay within their lane.

Moments of unconsciousness

These tired drivers may even succumb to brief but dangerous episodes of microsleep, where the brain shuts down for a few seconds. They may not realize what is happening until after they crash into another vehicle.

It is important to recognize the insidious threat that drowsiness poses on the roads, even on days with nice or sunny weather. The battle against fatigue-driven accidents begins with acknowledging the severity of the issue and adopting preventive measures.