The operation of a vehicle is a serious responsibility. Each person who gets behind the wheel of a car or truck should be certain that he or she is capable of safe driving. In addition to knowing how to operate the car, a driver should also be certain there are no other factors that could increase the chance of an accident. This includes avoiding driving under the influence of alcohol and being too tired to drive safely. Both drunk driving and fatigued driving are extremely dangerous.
You are likely aware of the dangers of drunk driving. This is an exceptionally risky behavior as it affects a driver’s physical capabilities, cognitive function and more. However, fatigued driving can also affect a driver in similar ways, yet many overlook the dangers of driving while too tired. Fatigued driving is the reason for many accidents that leave innocent victims with serious or fatal injuries.
Tired drivers versus drunk drivers
Drowsy driving does not receive as much attention as drunk driving, yet it can be equally dangerous. For example, drivers who are overly tired are likely to swerve, have difficulty maintaining lanes, fail to avoid hazards and demonstrate other behaviors often seen with drunk drivers. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drowsy driving is responsible for approximately 100,000 traffic accidents per year. Unlike alcohol intoxication, there is no system for accurately measuring how tired is too tired to drive safely.
Sleep deprivation and exhaustion affects drivers in multiple ways. It affects the brain’s ability to accurately assess information and make effective judgment calls. A sleepy driver is less likely to be properly vigilant behind the wheel and react to hazards in enough time to avoid a crash. Drunk drivers and overly fatigued drivers act in similar ways while behind the wheel, and fatigue and intoxication are likely to result in a relatively similar number of crashes.
Are you the victim of a fatigued driver?
If you believe you are suffering as the result of an accident caused by a fatigued driver, you have legal options available to you. The Oklahoma civil justice system provides individuals the ability to seek appropriate recovery through a claim. An assessment of your case will reveal if this is an appropriate course of action for you and how you can move forward to seek the compensation you need for a full and fair recovery.