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Drowsy driving a leading cause of car accidents in the U.S.


Car accidents remain at the top of the list of accidents that give rise to personal injury claims in the United States. Various organizations, both government and non-government, continue to study car accident crash data to determine the causes of car accidents and, from there, hopefully create a thorough study to determine ways to curb car accidents.

Based on the study by the National Sleep Foundation, 60 percent of adult drivers or an estimated 168 million people stated that they have operated their vehicles while feeling sleepy and 37 percent or an estimated 103 million people admitted that they have experienced falling asleep while driving. Out of the total number of surveyed individuals, four percent or an estimated 11 million drivers stated that they were involved in auto accidents or near accidents due to lack of sleep.

Driver fatigue is one of the leading causes of car accidents in the country. An estimated 100,000 crashes every year were linked to drowsy driving, resulting in $12 billion in monetary losses due to injuries and deaths.

Shift workers, adults with children and young people are at risk of being involved in sleep-related crashes. Adults between the ages of 18 and 29 are highly likely to drive even though they are sleep-deprived. Men are more likely to drive drowsy compared to women and adults with children are more likely to practice the same behavior compared to adults who do not have children.

People who have fallen asleep and then found themselves involved in a collision later can be held liable due to negligence or failure to exercise due caution. Victims may receive compensation through personal injury lawsuit.

Source: Drowsydriving.org, "Facts and stats," Accessed on Oct. 9, 2014

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