According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 100 000 accidents each year as well as 1,550 fatalities and 71,000 injuries are due to driver fatigue. Drowsy drivers also cause $12.5 billion in losses annually across the country. Sleepy truck drivers are especially a risk, because the truck driver’s life style encouraged poor sleep and off hours, which can make sleepiness worse. As well, truck drivers are responsible for very large vehicles which can do substantial damage in a Florida truck accident.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has launched a number of educational programs that have one clear message: sleepy driving is the same as impaired driving. In fact, research proves it. Drivers who drive drunk have the same delayed reaction times and impaired motor skills and drivers who drive tired. If we want to stop Florida drunk driving accidents, we also have to get serious about fatigued driving.
According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, several types of drivers are at high risk:
1) Young male drivers under age 26.
2) Workers who work long hours or who work shift work. According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, workers on the night shift have six times the risk of being in a collision when compared with traditional workers. The bad news is that truck drivers often do take on shift work in order to meet tight deadlines, which means that they are at greater risk.
3) Long haul drivers and commercial truck drivers. According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, fatigue is a contributing factor to 15% of all truck accidents.
4) People who have sleep disorders which are untreated or undiagnosed. These drivers are seven times more likely to fall asleep when driving than the average driver.
5) Travelers – especially business travelers – who are experiencing jet lag or who must travel or drive for long periods of time.
According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are many things that drivers can do to cut down on fatigued driving accidents. Getting good sleep and having good sleep habits can go a long way towards eliminating risk. As well, traveling with a friend and taking breaks every few hours can also help prevent accidents due to fatigue. Of course, avoiding any alcohol and any medications that may make you feel drowsy is also important to preventing collisions.
If you have been injured in a Florida truck accident, contact the Flaxman Law Group in Miami, Hollywood, or Homestead for a free consultation. Our team can meet with you to discuss your case and to help you understand your rights. The Flaxman Law Group has successfully worked on thousands of cases on behalf of our Southern Florida clients and as a result we have the aggressive trial and negotiating experience you may need.