Due to life’s demands, it is not uncommon for people to miss out on sleep that they really need. The average person is supposed to get seven to nine hours of sleep every night in order to feel refreshed the following day. Unfortunately, many people in South Carolina and elsewhere do not get that many hours, leaving them drowsy and at greater risk of being involved in car accidents.
It is believed that missing just one or two hours of sleep can greatly increase one’s odds of being involved in an auto accident. In fact, those who miss just this short amount nearly double their chances of being in a wreck the next day. This is thought to be just as bad as those who drive while intoxicated.
How can missing out on just a few hours of sleep have such an effect? Sleep restores the body. When one fails to get the necessary number of hours of sleep, the body is left in more of a coping state — just enough to get around. One’s reaction time will be decreased and one’s attention will not be up to par. This leaves a person in a vulnerable state; one in which he or she is not fully prepared to react properly in certain situations — such as while operating his or her vehicle.
Car accidents caused by drowsy drivers can have serious — if not fatal — consequences. Those in South Carolina who have been injured or lost loved ones to drowsy drivers may have legal recourse. Civil claims may be filed with the assistance of an experienced attorney in an effort for victims or surviving family members to seek compensation for their losses.
Source: tucson.com, “Missing Just 1 Hour of Sleep May Double Drivers’ Crash Risk”, Karen Pallarito, Dec. 6, 2016