CAR ACCIDENTS AND PERSONAL INJURY: ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL. One of the most dangerous aspects of driving on any road in Syracuse and Central New York, whether it is Erie Boulevard or I-81 is sleep-deprived or overtired drivers. This applies not only to passenger cars, but also tractor trailers and buses. How many stories have we seen in the news recently about accidents closing down portions of Interstate 81 or Onondaga Lake Parkway?
Being sleepy or over-tired behind the wheel of a car can be deadly, both for you and for other drivers sharing the road with you. Whey you doze off or fall asleep behind the wheel, the results can be catastrophic and cause extremely serious personal injury, property damage and death. What is worse is that falling asleep or dozing off behind the wheel is 100% preventable. If a driver feels they are starting to become tired and inadvertently slipping into an adjacent lane or off onto the shoulder of the road, don’t continue to drive. Get off the road, find a safe place to park for awhile and catch some shut-eye. You may not make that urgent appointment, but you will certainly make it home alive and in one piece.
Syracuse Car Accidents: Asleep at the Wheel
There are a number of contributing factors to drivers falling asleep at the wheel, whether it’s a car, a truck, or a bus and causing serious personal injury to themselves and others. The most common causes for falling asleep at the wheel are:
- Taking prescription or other medications that cause drowsiness, especially when combined with alcohol consumption.
- The driver could have a medical condition or sleep disorder, including recent lack of sleep, compounded with stress.
- You could fall asleep or doze off momentarily behind the wheel after working unusually long hours at your job.
- There is also the hypnotic effect of staring at the road ahead for long periods of time, having your mind wander, and dozing off, especially at night on the interstate or Thruway. Long haul over-the-road commercial truck drivers are especially susceptible to this, so always be aware that that big rig can turn deadly quickly, especially at night or with limited weather-related visibility.
How to Avoid Falling Asleep Behind the Wheel
There are any number of ways to avoid falling asleep behind the wheel and becoming a lethal hazard to yourself and other drivers on the road around you. The most common way of avoiding impaired driving is to call a taxi. If you are too tired to drive, get somebody else to drive, whether it’s a cab driver, a friend, or family member. If you are on the road alone and you feel drowsy, pull over at a rest area and take a nap until you feel confident that you can be alert enough to drive safely.
Personal Injury Car Accidents: Proving Liability
It can sometimes be difficult to prove car accident liability in the case of the other driver falling asleep behind the wheel of their vehicle. Often falling asleep at the wheel can be proven by forensic evidence at the accident scene. Other times, it is not so easy to prove. Accident scene evidence can demonstrate that their vehicle drifted into your lane, lack of tire skid marks, wrong way driving, evidence the driver had been driving long hours or was taking medication with side effects of drowsiness.
Syracuse Personal Injury Lawyers
If you have been involved in an accident that resulted in personal injury and you suspect that the other driver fell asleep behind the wheel or was otherwise impaired in such a way that they could not safely operate their vehicle, contact the Syracuse Personal Injury Lawyers and Syracuse Car Accident Lawyers at McMahon, Kublick & Smith, PC in Syracuse, New York. Contact us today for a free, complimentary case evaluation and consultation.