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Drowsy driving a danger to motorists

Some Ohio drivers may be among the many who have admitted in various studies to driving while fatigued. According to a recent survey conducted by AAA, roughly two out of every five motorists admit to have nodded off while behind the wheel at some point in their lives.

The first week of November was National Drowsy Driving Prevention Week, and a representative from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration spoke at the Asleep at the Wheel forum in Washington, D.C., about the problem. He is also a former member of the National Transportation Safety Board, and according to him, about 5,000 to 7,000 people die annually in the United States in drowsy driving accidents.

He also said that between 2001 and 2012, driving while fatigued was found to be a factor in 39.5 percent of major highway investigations by the NTSB. In 2010, AAA did a study that found that 16.5 percent of deadly traffic accidents are caused by drowsy driving. The more recent survey conducted by AAA found that drivers between the ages of 19 and 24 are the most like to fall asleep while driving with nearly 40 percent saying that in the past month, they had struggled to stay awake while behind the wheel. Nearly one-third of people across all age groups said they had done so as well during the preceding month.

An accident as a result of drowsy driving may lead to severe injuries to passengers or occupants of other vehicles. While the sleep-deprived driver may be insured, his or her insurance company may still offer too little to cover an injured victim's medical expenses and lost wages resulting from time missed from work. A personal injury attorney can often be of assistance in seeking compensation from the negligent driver for the losses that have been incurred.

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