USA Today reported that the Automobile Association of America (AAA) that the federal government grossly underestimated the percentage of car crashes caused as a result of drowsy driving and is alerting the public of the seriousness of this danger.
According to the article, the federal government said drowsy driving causes a small amount of crashes — between 1% and 2%. Because it is difficult to determine whether lack of sleep played a role in the crash, these cases involving drowsy driving are underreported. But the AAA stated that, based on the research by its Foundation for Traffic Safety, in which more than 700 in-vehicle videos of crashes were analyzed, the percentage of all crashes involving sleepy drivers is closer to 9.8%. For crashes where property damage occurs, the percentage goes up to 10.8%.
The figures were determined by viewing videos of the drivers’ faces in the three minutes before the crash occurred. They then measured the percentage of time their eyes were closed during that time and their level of drowsiness. According to the AAA, the three common symptoms of drowsy driving include having trouble keeping one’s eyes open, drifting from one lane into another and not remembering the last few miles driven.
A survey from the AAA Foundation showed that 96% of respondents view drowsy driving as a serious problem, but at the same time, 29% admitted to being excessively tired while driving, even having their eyes closed while behind the wheel. AAA Northeast spokesperson Robert Sinclair said that sleeping two to three hours less than what adults need can increase the risk of a crash fourfold, which, he said, “is the equivalent of driving drunk.”
If you have been injured in an automobile accident, it is essential that you consult with a Suffolk County accident attorney right away. Failure to do so can result in an irrevocable loss of recovery or right to seek reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses. The experienced attorneys at McGuire & Peláez P.C. Attorneys at Law are available in Central Islip and throughout Suffolk County 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist you in getting the money you deserve. Call (631) 348-1702.