Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Drowsy Driving Accident Injury?

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How Common are U.S. Drowsy Driving Accidents?

How Common are U.S. Drowsy Driving Accidents?

Jul 6, 2022

Drowsy driving is considered a type of distracted driving which results in countless injuries and fatalities to motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists every year. Drowsy driving is extremely dangerous, putting the safety and health of both the driver and those around him or her at risk.

Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Drowsy Driving Accident Injury?

Drowsy driving can be caused by any number of factors, including poor sleep, prescription medications, illicit drug or alcohol use, etc. Drowsy driving is often equated to drunk driving, as a driver’s reaction time and decision making skills can be significantly reduced, potentially leading to serious car accidents and other types of collisions.

Below we will look at drowsy driving in more detail, including some recent statistics, what sorts of injuries are often caused by such car accidents, and what types of damages for an injury due to negligence may be recoverable through a civil lawsuit with Dordulian Law Group.

2022 Drowsy Driving Accident Statistics (Based on Latest Data)

Drowsy Driving Accident Statistics 2022

When operating a motor vehicle while drowsy, drivers’ reaction times, awareness of hazards, and ability to maintain attention are all diminished, similar to drunk or drug-induced driving. This information has been confirmed by the National Sleep Foundation.

In fact, driving after going more than 20 hours without sleep is the equivalent of driving with a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.08% – the U.S. legal limit. Moreover, you are three times more likely to be in a car accident if you are fatigued while behind the wheel.

Let’s look at some of the most recent statistics on drowsy driving in the United States:

  • 697 deaths due to drowsy driving-related crashes occurred in 2019, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
  • In 2019, 1,240 drivers who were involved in fatal crashes (or 2.4%) were reported as being drowsy.
  • According to the NHTSA, 795 people were killed in drowsy-driving related crashes in 2017.
  • Between 2013 and 2017, there were a total of 4,111 fatalities that involved drowsy driving.
  • In 2017, there were 91,000 police-reported crashes that involved drowsy drivers (and those crashes led to about 50,000 people being injured).
  • Fatalities involving a drowsy driver accounted for 2% of all traffic deaths in 2016.
  • According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study, one in 25 drivers surveyed reported that they had fallen asleep while driving in the past 30 days.
  • According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), 10 to 20% of large truck or bus crashes involved a tired driver.
  • The GHSA also issued a report in August 2016 concluding that the estimated annual societal cost of fatigue-related fatal and injury crashes was $109 billion. This figure does not include property damage, however.
  • The NHTSA found that many drowsy-driving crashes involve a single vehicle, with no passengers besides the driver, running off the road at a high rate of speed (often with no evidence of braking).
  • Drowsy driving accidents frequently occur on rural roads and highways.

One of the most problematic aspects of drowsy driving is its insidiousness – a driver may not know whether or not he or she is in fact fatigued while behind the wheel. Depending on the extent of one’s fatigue, whether due to lack of sleep or perhaps influence from medications, the National Safety Council (NSC) notes that some people may also experience micro-sleep – short, involuntary periods of inattention – while behind the wheel. In the four or five seconds a driver experiences micro-sleep, at highway speed, “the vehicle will travel the length of a football field,” the NSC confirms.

When Do Drowsy Driving Accidents Most Commonly Occur?

According to the NHTSA, drowsy driving crashes and fatalities:

  • Occur most frequently between midnight and 6 a.m., or in the late afternoon;
  • Occur at both times of the day, typically when people experience dips in their circadian rhythm – the human body’s internal clock that regulates sleep.

Accidents and Injuries Caused by Drowsy Driving

Accidents and Injuries Caused by Drowsy Driving

A study by the American Automobile Association (AAA) found that 21% of all car accidents leading to fatalities were due to drowsy driving. Moreover, one third of all drowsy driving accidents reportedly cause serious injuries.

Some common accident scenarios that are often caused by drowsy driving include:

  • High-speed crashes
  • A driver veering off the roadway
  • Failing to heed traffic signals or roadway warnings
  • Crashes involving property damage
  • Crashes occurring late at night or early in the morning

Drowsy driving accidents can lead to a number of injuries, often those which are considered either severe or catastrophic. Some common drowsy driving accident injuries include:

  • Cuts, scrapes, or lacerations
  • Broken or fractured bones
  • Traumatic brain injury (TB)
  • Concussion (MTBI)
  • Paralysis
  • Back injury
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Whiplash

What Can I Do if I’ve Been Injured in a Drowsy Driving Accident?

Drowsy driving is a form of negligence under California law. Accordingly, a driver, passenger, or pedestrian injured in a drowsy driving accident caused by another party may be eligible to recover financial compensation for things like hospital or medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and more.

If you’ve been injured in a drowsy driving accident through no fault of your own, filing a civil claim for damages can be the best means of making a complete recovery which includes your health and well-being, and also addresses your financial situation. But there are recommended steps to take after a drowsy driving accident to help ensure that your claim is maximized and you recover the cash settlement you deserve.

Seeking medical attention after a drowsy driving accident is perhaps the most important of said steps. A thorough medical exam by a licensed physician will ensure that your health is addressed, but it will also provide critical documentation to help support your civil claim. If you wait to seek medical attention, the at-fault party may attempt to claim that your injuries were due to factors other than the drowsy driving accident. Accordingly, the drowsy driving accident lawyers at Dordulian Law Group (DLG) strongly encourage every injured victim to seek medical care immediately after an incident occurs.

Moreover, if at all possible, DLG’s car accident lawyers recommend the following steps be taken after a drowsy driving crash:

  • Call the police and report the incident.
  • Take photos and videos of the accident scene.
  • Take photos and videos of your injuries.
  • Gather witness statements.
  • Gather contact information of all involved drivers (particularly the drowsy or at-fault driver).
  • Gather vehicle information (particularly the vehicle that caused the crash).
  • File an official report with the DMV.
  • Do not make any official statement to your insurance company (or the at-fault party’s insurance provider).
  • Do not sign any legal documents or accept any type of settlement/cash offer without first speaking to an experienced car accident lawyer.
  • Contact a proven and aggressive car accident lawyer at DLG for a free consultation to ensure your rights are protected and the maximum financial compensation you deserve is pursued.

Do I Need to Hire a Lawyer for a Drowsy Driving Accident Injury?

When you’re injured in a drowsy driving accident, one of the most difficult aspects involved may be determining fault. Although you may be certain that the driver who caused the accident and resulting injuries you suffered was in fact drowsy, proving that liability under the law can be challenging without a great deal of experience. That’s where the personal injury lawyers at DLG can help.

Led by Sam Dordulian, a former Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles County, DLG is a proven and leading car accident firm with over 25 years of personal injury experience. Moreover, Dordulian’s more than 100 jury trial victories mean you never have to worry about having to accept a lowball settlement offer which does not fairly compensate you for all of your injuries and damages – past and future.

Unlike settlement mill firms that may be quick to accept such an unfair offer, DLG’s car accident lawyers prepare every drowsy driving accident claim for trial. Accordingly, if the at-fault party or insurance provider refuses a maximum settlement which encompasses all of your applicable damages, we simply take the case to trial and prove it before a jury.

Hiring a DLG drowsy driving accident lawyer can help ensure that you recover all economic damages within your claim, but also all non-economic damage as well. Such non-economic damages, including pain and suffering or emotional trauma, can be difficult to prove without the assistance of a skilled and proven personal injury lawyer from DLG.

Some of the damages we will pursue on your behalf following a drowsy driving accident injury may include:

  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Emotional trauma
  • Medical care expenses
  • Hospital bills
  • Physical therapy or rehabilitation expenses
  • Diminished quality of life
  • Pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages

How Long Do I Have to File a Drowsy Driving Accident Claim?

Drowsy driving accidents typically adhere to the standard two-year personal injury statute of limitations under California law. This means that you usually have two years from the date of a drowsy driving accident injury to file a civil claim for damages.

However, it is in your best interest to not delay filing you claim, but instead to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer immediately after your accident. Doing so will help improve the chance of reaching a successful conclusion to your case which includes a maximum cash settlement or verdict.

Furthermore, claims filed against government or public entities are often held to a shorter statute of limitations – sometimes only six months. Accordingly, it is in your best interest to arrange for a free and confidential consultation with a DLG car accident lawyer as soon as possible after your injury occurs.

What Are the Signs of Being Drowsy/Fatigued?

Free Los Angeles, California, Drowsy Driving Accident Lawyer Consultation

Contact a drowsy driving accident lawyer from DLG’s Car Accident Division today for a free, confidential, and no obligation consultation at 818-322-4056. Our No Win/No Fee Guarantee means that we don’t charge a penny until we’ve successfully recovered maximum financial compensation for your car accident injury claim. If we don’t win, you don’t pay – it’s just that simple. With DLG, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by filing a drowsy driving accident injury claim for the financial compensation you truly deserve.

Schedule an appointment online for a free consultation today, or call us directly to speak to our top-rated, expert car accident attorneys.

To date, we’ve helped injured victims like you secure more than $100 million in settlements and verdicts while maintaining a 98% success record. When you’ve suffered an injury due to a drowsy driver, DLG’s Los Angeles car accident lawyers are here to pursue justice on your behalf, and to fight aggressively to recover the maximum financial compensation you need to make a complete recovery.

Don’t settle for anything less than the DLG Advantage when you’ve been injured in a California drowsy driving accident.

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