You have had a really long week. The kids are dealing with the flu and you and your spouse haven’t slept for nights. Not only that, but you don’t have sick days to stay home from work, so you are left working 50 hours a week on top of not sleeping. This is a typical story for many people these days. If it is not children keeping us awake, it is school, or work, or a plethora of other factors that get added to our to-do lists. Many times people don’t realize how much we sacrifice sleep for, if there is too much to do we often times let sleep go rather than a television show or fun night out with the friends.
According to the Traffic Research Center, these are the influences of sleep deprivation on performance:
- Slower reaction time: sleeplessness slows down your reflexes; reaction time slows down, preventing you from stopping in times of danger.
- Decrease in concentration levels: When you are overly tired, your attention span decreases. Most people are subject to a decrease in attention every 90-120 minutes; however, sleepiness makes this decrease even worse and it can cause accidents when you fall asleep at the wheel.
- Disorder in information processing: Sleepiness is very much like being under the influence of alcohol or drugs. When you are sleepy, your mental and psychomotor skills diminish. In one study, a group of subjects were kept awake for 28 hours; another group was given alcoholic drinks every half hour. When both groups were tested for hand-eye coordination, the ones who were sleep deprived performed equally bad as the ones with 0.5 blood alcohol level.
Studies are showing that people who are sleep deprived and on the road driving are posing extreme dangers not only to themselves, but other people on the road with them. Often times the excuse of giving up sleep is justified as long as a coffee can be in hand as we drive. The North Carolina Highway Patrol claims that drowsiness while driving is the cause of thousands of car accidents annually, and reports of fatal accidents exist as well.
The consequences of not receiving enough sleep not only affect your ability to work hard throughout the day and maintain focus, but it is also affecting the ability to keep your eyes on the road. One night without sleep can have disastrous effects on the rest of the week, and not only that the rest of your life if involved in an accident. Studies are showing that being drowsy on the road is similar to driving under the influence, though there is no real way to scientifically test how tired your body really is.
Research also shows that those who sleep between only 6-7 hours a night are twice as likely to get involved in a car accident than those sleeping for 8 or more hours a night. People that choose to sleep less than 5 hours per night are increasing their risk for a car accident by 4 or 5 times. Either way, driving while tired is extremely dangerous; make a plan of action to start better sleeping patterns. If you do sleep more as a general way of life, you will notice improvement in many areas, whether it is on the road or at work, or the mere fact that you are alive and breathing. Be aware of the consequences, and also be aware of your surroundings for other drivers on the road who appear to be drowsy.
Contact the Auto Accident Law Firm of Bice Law
If you have suffered injury from a vehicle accident, take the first step to protect your legal rights – contact the personal injury firm of Bice Law. We investigate the accident records or scene in order to interview key witnesses and document evidence before it has been destroyed or removed. We’ll review your medical records and evaluate your long-term prognosis to assess the amount of damages that your injury warrants. We’ll determine whether an out-of-court settlement or trial is the best strategy to obtain maximum benefits for you or your family. We serve families across both North and South Carolina. You only have a limited time after your injury to file a claim, however, so you must act quickly. Contact the personal injury firm of Bice Law today by calling 877-BICE-877 or submit an online request to get a free consultation with a vehicle accident attorney. Results are how we measure success – we’ve built a strong reputation both in and out of the courtroom, and we’ll put our experience and expertise to work on your behalf