Do you know the three Ds in driving?
There’s drunken driving…
There’s distracted driving…
And there’s drowsy driving.
The third one gets way too little attention from government agencies and the public and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration plans to change that.
Did you know that it is estimated that anywhere from 2 to 20% of annual fatal car accidents are caused by driver drowsiness or fatigue. Pretty big range – right? That’s part of the problem – experts believe the problem is a large one – but research on the topic is mostly old and fairly scarce.
Here is what we think we know. According to old data available from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drowsy driving is a factor in roughly 100,000 car crashes annually that claim 1,500 lives and cause 71,000 injuries. However, recent data from the National Transportation Safety Board shows that up to 1.2 million car accidents are related to drowsy driving and claim 4,000 to 7,000 lives a year.
So how do we get a true handle on the extent of the problem and how do we reduce the number of sleepy drivers causing these car accidents?
First – law enforcement personnel in Connecticut and across the nation need to be taught how to spot drowsy driver syndrome. But what are the signs one might look for?
Here are two:
- Often a drowsy driver is in a one-car accident.
- And often there are no skid marks before the collision.
So how do we reduce the number of such car accidents in Connecticut?
Public education is a place to start – with a focus on groups of drivers most vulnerable to the problem. And technology – how can technology be employed in vehicles to alert drivers that they are losing focus?
Actually – a computer algorithm has been developed that can assess driving behavior and predict when a driver will drift out of the lane six seconds before it happens. Now the challenge will be to find a way to bring that technology to the mass market.
If you’re ever injured in a car accident, know that the Connecticut car accident lawyers at RisCassi & Davis have been assisting drivers injured in accidents for 60 years. And we have received both state and national recognition for our work in this area. If you are ever in a car accident of any kind and would like a free consultation with one of our Connecticut car accident lawyers, please contact us. There is no obligation.