The similarities between drowsy and drunk driving

According to a recent survey, approximately 60 percent of adults in Arizona and the rest of the U.S. have driven drowsy at least once. Even worse, a third say that they have fallen asleep while behind the wheel. The dangerous trend of drowsy driving contributes to many accidents. In fact, a lack of sleep can produce effects similar to those of alcohol intoxication.

For comparison, a person who drives after 18 straight hours of wakefulness will exhibit behavior similar to a driver with a .05 percent blood-alcohol content. After 24 consecutive hours, it's as if someone with .10 percent BAC is driving. The legal limit in the U.S. is .08 percent.

Both drunk and sleepy drivers exhibit inattention to the road and slower judgment and reaction times. However, there are differences. Drowsy drivers can nod off at any speed while drunk drivers tend to travel slowly. The latter are also more likely to try to be careful by braking and swerving away from obstacles.

When drivers notice that they are yawning constantly, drifting out of their lanes and having trouble focusing, they should pull over and try to nap. Switching drivers, when possible, is also recommended. Another precaution drivers can take is to travel when they are most alert, such as in the morning instead of at night.

Distracted driving is a form of negligent behavior that can easily cause a motor vehicle accident. A victim who has been hurt in such an accident could retain a lawyer who could file a claim. Accident attorneys usually have a network of professionals like photographers, investigators and medical experts who can investigate an accident.

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  • United States District Court | District Of Arizona
  • Maricopa Country Bar Association
  • State Bar Of Arizona
  • United States Court Of Appeals | Ninth Circuit

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