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Fatigued Driver Car Accident Lawyers

Fatigued driving is a major contributing factor to accidents in Arizona, with drowsy drivers posing a significant threat to themselves and other road users. The state’s vast highways, long distances, and the desert climate make it particularly susceptible to fatigued driving incidents. Arizona’s DOT crash facts show that in 2022, the peak hour for fatal accidents is between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m., which is the time most drivers feel fatigued after a long trip.

One of the primary reasons why fatigued driving leads to accidents in Arizona is the long distances people have to travel. The state is known for its sprawling landscape and extensive highway networks. Drivers like to cover significant distances to reach their destinations, increasing the likelihood of fatigue setting in. This fatigue can impair a person’s judgment, reaction time, and attention, increasing the risk of an accident.

The desert climate in Arizona also contributes to fatigued driving accidents. Hot summers and dry air can make driving uncomfortable and physically exhausting. The intense heat can cause physical fatigue and dehydration, leading to decreased alertness and concentration. As a result, drivers may experience a decline in their cognitive abilities and slower reaction times, making them more prone to accidents.

Another factor contributing to fatigued driving accidents is the prevalence of shift work and long working hours in industries such as transportation and healthcare. Night shifts or extended working hours can disrupt the body’s natural sleep-wake cycle, leading to fatigue during the times when individuals need to be alert.

Causes of Driver Fatigue

Driver fatigue is a common and dangerous problem that significantly increases the risk of accidents on the road. There are several common causes of driver fatigue that individuals should be aware of so they can take preventive measures.

First, lack of adequate sleep is a major cause of driver fatigue. Not getting enough sleep can have a detrimental impact on a person’s alertness, attention, and reaction time. Sleep deprivation can be caused by things such as working long hours, sleeping disorders, or an irregular sleep schedule.

Another cause of driver fatigue is driving during the night or at times when one would usually be asleep. Our bodies are naturally programmed to sleep during the night, so driving during these hours can disrupt our sleep-wake cycle and lead to fatigue. Additionally, the reduced visibility and long stretches of highway without lighting can further contribute to drowsiness and fatigue.

Monotonous or boring tasks, such as long highway drives, can also lead to driver fatigue. When our brains are not sufficiently stimulated or engaged, it can be difficult to maintain focus and attention for extended periods. As a result, drivers may experience reduced alertness and an increased likelihood of falling asleep at the wheel.

Lastly, the use of certain medications or substances can cause drowsiness and fatigue, impairing one’s ability to drive safely. Prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and recreational substances can all have sedating effects that make it dangerous to operate a vehicle.

Injuries Caused by Driver Fatigue

Driver fatigue accidents, which occur when a driver is excessively tired or drowsy, can lead to certain types of injuries. One common injury caused by driver fatigue accidents is whiplash. This occurs when the head and neck are forcefully jerked forward and backward due to a sudden stop or collision. Whiplash can cause neck pain, stiffness, headaches, and even long-term health issues.

Another common injury in driver fatigue accidents is broken bones. When a fatigued driver loses control of the vehicle or falls asleep at the wheel, the resulting crash can cause fractures. Fractured bones may range from minor breaks to more severe fractures, depending on the impact of the accident. Broken bones may require surgeries, casts, or immobilization to aid in the healing process.

Brain injuries are also a significant concern in driver fatigue accidents. If a tired driver does not react in time to avoid a collision, the impact can cause traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) to those impacted. These injuries can range from concussions to more severe TBIs, causing cognitive impairment, memory loss, behavioral changes, and other long-term neurological issues.

Lastly, driver fatigue accidents often result in soft tissue injuries. These injuries involve damage to muscles, tendons, or ligaments and may include sprains, strains, and tears. Soft tissue injuries can cause pain, swelling, bruising, and limited range of motion, affecting the injured person’s daily activities and quality of life.

Overall, it is important to recognize the potential dangers of driver fatigue and take necessary precautions to prevent accidents. Regular breaks, sufficient sleep, and avoiding driving during late-night hours can help reduce the risk of fatigue-related accidents and the injuries they may cause.

Fatigued drivers are not just risky drivers; they are responsible for hundreds of accidents in Arizona. When you’ve been injured in an accident with a suspected fatigued driver, it’s important to contact the fatigued driver car accident lawyers at Torgenson Law as soon as possible. These types of accidents can be complex, and it takes experienced personal injury attorneys to gather all the evidence and build a strong case for compensation.

Preventing Driver Fatigue

Driver fatigue is a major cause of road accidents, as it impairs a driver’s ability to make quick decisions and react to potential hazards. Therefore, it is essential to take preventive measures to avoid driver fatigue. The following are some of the best ways to prevent driver fatigue:

  • Get enough sleep. Adequate sleep is crucial for alertness and concentration while driving. It’s recommended for adults to get 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Prioritize your sleep and establish a regular schedule to ensure you are well-rested before embarking on a long drive.
  • Taking regular rest breaks. Taking short breaks every 2 hours or every 100 miles can help combat fatigue. Use these breaks to stretch your legs, get some fresh air, and have a light snack or drink. This rejuvenates the mind and body and helps to maintain focus on the road.
  • Avoid driving during peak sleep hours. Our bodies have biological rhythms that make us naturally drowsy during certain periods of the day, particularly during the early morning (2 a.m. to 6 a.m.) and mid-afternoon (2 p.m. to 4 p.m.) Whenever possible, try to plan your trips outside of these times to reduce the risk of fatigue.
  • Stay hydrated and limit heavy meals. Dehydration and consuming heavy meals can cause drowsiness. It is important to stay hydrated by drinking water regularly and opting for light, nutritious snacks during the journey. Avoid heavy, greasy, or high-carbohydrate meals that can make you feel sleepy.
  • Regulate caffeine intake. Caffeine is a temporary stimulant that can increase alertness and reduce fatigue. Consuming moderate amounts of caffeine, such as a cup of coffee or energy drink, can provide a temporary boost. However, it is important to remember that caffeine is not a substitute for proper sleep and should be used sparingly and strategically.
  • Split your driving time. If possible, share the driving responsibilities with someone else in the vehicle. This allows for breaks and rest periods, which reduces overall fatigue experienced during a long trip.
  • Avoid medications that cause drowsiness. Certain medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, can cause drowsiness and may affect your ability to concentrate on the road. Use care when operating a motor vehicle while taking certain medications.

Call Arizona’s Fatigued Driver Car Accident Lawyers

If you or a family member has been injured in an accident caused by a fatigued driver, call the personal injury lawyers who specialize in complex and challenging cases. Torgenson Law has stood up for the rights of Arizona drivers for over two decades.

Our team of attorneys and paralegals will thoroughly investigate your case and work with you and law enforcement to determine who is at fault. For a free and confidential evaluation, call us at 602-726-0747 or reach out online. We’ll work with you to build a compelling case.