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How sleep deprivation leads to car accidents

On Behalf of | Dec 20, 2023 | blog, Personal Injury

In today’s fast-paced world, sleep is often sacrificed in the pursuit of productivity. However, many motorists fail to realize that sleep deprivation poses a significant threat to road safety.

Understanding the connection between sleep deprivation and car accidents is a lesson worth learning for drivers of all ages. It is also a factor that can help establish fault if a car accident does occur due to another driver’s exhaustion.

Sleep deprivation and alertness

Adequate sleep contributes to cognitive function and alertness. When someone does not get enough sleep, their reaction times slow down and their ability to concentrate diminishes. This lack of alertness can have severe consequences on the road, where split-second decisions can mean the difference between a near miss and a tragic accident.

Drowsy driving

Drowsy driving is akin to driving under the influence, impairing one’s ability to operate a vehicle safely.  For the sake of safety, all motorists should recognize the signs of drowsy driving. Frequent yawning, drifting between lanes and difficulty keeping one’s eyes open are all often-overlooked signs of a driver’s exhaustion.

Preventive measures

Understanding the consequences of sleep deprivation on driving should encourage everyone to make better choices. Establishing a better balance between commuting, traveling and sleeping can be one step in the right direction. When it becomes clear that driving is unsafe due to sleep deprivation, seeking out public transportation or rideshare services can be a better way to get to your destination.

Statistics show that drowsy driving accounts for around 100,000 vehicle crashes. The risks of driving while exhausted are very real, so it is important to understand that everyone can make the road safer by avoiding driving with sleep deprivation.