One frequent culprit of roadway accidents that hasn’t gotten a lot of press over the years is drowsy driving. A recent survey found that about 50% of Americans have admitted to driving while they were in a state of drowsiness. Furthermore, 20% of those surveyed said that they have actually fallen asleep behind the wheel. This has led many Ohio drivers to question if drowsy driving is just as bad as drunk driving.
The dangers of driving drowsy
Car accidents that are the result of drowsy driving can range from slight to fatal. When a person is drowsy, it affects their ability to operate a motor vehicle safely. Those who are in a state of drowsiness tend to have less attention, bad judgment, reduced coordination, decreased vigilance and slow reaction times. These consequences of drowsiness can lead to many dangerous situations out on the road.
Drowsy drivers are commonly found to be weaving back and forth between different lanes of the highway. They also tend to have trouble maintaining a constant rate of speed and keeping a safe distance away from other vehicles that are on the roadway. When obstacles do appear on the roadway, like a crossing pedestrian, drowsy drivers tend to have a slower reaction time than alert drivers.
Drowsy driving is the new drunk driving
After reading about the attributes of a drowsy driver, it becomes very clear that drowsy driving has similar consequences to drunk driving. Both of these types of drivers have reduced coordination, bad judgment and slower reaction times while behind the wheel. This makes them more prone to both single-vehicle and multiple-vehicle accidents.
Just because a person hasn’t been drinking doesn’t mean that they should be behind the wheel of a vehicle. Those who have found themselves in a state of drowsiness should hang up their keys until they have had enough rest to refresh their bodies and minds. If you’ve been injured in an accident because the other driver was in a state of drowsiness, it’s important to talk to a lawyer to ensure that the liable party is held responsible for their actions.