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Driving Drowsy vs. Driving Drunk: What Your Local Law Office Has to Say

Driving Drowsy vs. Driving Drunk

Everyone knows how dangerous it is to drink and drive; we’re practically bombarded by regularly broadcasted announcements on the topic. However, it’s shocking that driving while drowsy, which is just as dangerous, often goes unmentioned. Still, we are left wondering how the two are related…

Drunk Driving or Sleepless Driving?

To begin, alcohol and sleep may seem like two different issues, but this isn’t the case when it comes to the impairment while driving.  In fact, the more alcohol consumed, the slower your reaction time. On the other hand, the less sleep you get creates a slower reaction time.

Additionally, alcohol and lack of sleep complicate information processing in the brain and have adverse effects on short-term memory. For example, 24 hours without rest is equivalent to having a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .10, which is over the legal limit of .08! While you can’t get a DUI for driving without rest, you still could seriously injure yourself or others on the road when you drive sleep deprived.

Clearly, it’s safe to say both pose a threat to public safety, with each doubling the probability of being involved in a car accident. Unfortunately, there isn’t an assessment able to determine if an accident was the result of someone falling asleep at the wheel. While some vehicles are equipped with warning sounds if the car goes off road, it might not be enough. Drunk drivers, on the other hand, can be stopped and issued a DWI…but only if they’re caught.

 

Solutions to Keep You Safe on The Road

First, drunk driving is a notorious killer, but this damage is easily avoidable. Plan a ride ahead of time if you know you or your driver will be drinking. If you have a friend that can serve as a designated driver, please enlist their help. If you don’t want to bother your friends, ride-sharing services, such as Uber and Lyft, are great options to get you home safely. Don’t let your fun night end in a reckless tragedy.

Second, on the surface, drowsy driving can seem harmless, but it can also have deadly consequences. To prevent dozing off on your way home, the average adult needs to sleep at least seven hours each night. Sometimes, this is just not possible, so, under no circumstances should a driver get behind the wheel if they haven’t slept in the last 24 hoursSemi-Truck drivers, frequent travelers, and those who have a long commute are particularly susceptible to driving while tired!

You can protect yourself and others by spotting red flags when you’re the driver. Pull over and switch drivers (if possible) if you notice yourself:

  • Having difficulty focusing
  • Yawning repeatedly
  • Nodding your head
  • Drifting into other lanes

Personal Injury Lawyers Want You To Know It’s Drowsy Driving Prevention Week 2017

To raise awareness, the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) has designated November 5-12, 2017 as Drowsy Driving Prevention Week and is designed to reduce the number of deaths due to sleep-deprived driving accidents. There are 6,400 fatal accidents annually in the United States caused by drowsy driving.  The unfortunate reality is 3 out of 10 Americans reported that they were unsure of how many hours they could stay awake and still be able to operate a vehicle safely. Help us stop drowsy driving by sharing resources and information on social media followed by the hashtag #AlertAtTheWeel. McCarron Law Firm will be sharing these tips all week, so increase awareness by sharing our posts with your friends and family! Like McCarron Law Firm’s Facebook Page for #AlertAtTheWheel tips!

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If You’re Injured, Call a Car Accident Lawyer

Awareness is critical; however, accidents still happen. If you or someone you know was recently injured in an automobile accident, McCarron Law Firm is here to help.  Give us a call at 309-820-1010 or contact us online now. Drive safe, stay sober, and get some sleep this November!

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Tuesday, 17 September 2019