Drowsy driving is a problem that occurs frequently, and can be just as deadly as accidents that occur because of drug and alcohol intoxication. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that more than 856 fatalities occurred in 2014 because of drowsy driving. The organization reports that about 83,000 incidents per year occur because of drowsy driving.
These accidents can not only cause destruction to property, but may result in serious injury as well; potentially leaving victims with mounting medical bills, loss of wages, and pain and suffering. If you were the victim of someone else’s negligent, drowsy driving, you may be entitled to compensation.
What Causes Drowsy Driving?
Drowsy driving does not always manifest as a complete and utter loss of control of the wheel. Sometimes it manifests as slowed reaction time, poor judgment or other inhibitors. A few common causes include:
Natural Fatigue: The natural fatigue that comes from operating a vehicle for continuous hours or after a long, strenuous day can result in serious accident.
Intoxication: Intoxication from drugs and alcohol can result in deadly drowsy driving accidents. Not only can depressants like alcohol induce fatigue, they can also slow your ability to react.
Prescription medication falls under this purview as well. Even if a driver is prescribed a medication that makes them drowsy and causes an accident, you may still be able to seek compensation.
Whose Fault Is a Drowsy Driving Incident?
A DC personal injury attorney may be able to accurately review the case and let you know where the fault lies in the case. The drowsy driver may be held liable for the accident depending on the circumstances. You may be hesitant to contact an attorney because you feel as though you are partially at fault for the accident. You may still be able to receive compensation even if you are partially responsible.
What You Can Recuperate
Your attorney may try to collect two types of compensation for you. The first type of compensation is called compensatory damages, and it consists of everything tangible that you lost. Compensatory damages cover losses such as lost work wages, medical bills, medication expenses, therapy sessions, automobile repairs and the like. Punitive damages are a secondary award that you may receive if the judge feels as though the offender was especially neglectful. Such damages can cover your pain and suffering, as well.
How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
The attorney plays many roles for the client during a personal injury case. First, the attorney is a caring ear that can listen to the details of your story and offer you compassionate advice. Secondly, the attorney can try to settle your case out of court. The attorney may try to get the other party to settle quickly so that you can receive the funds you need to get your life back on track. Thirdly, the attorney can fight aggressively to convince the judge to rule in your favor if the case goes to court.
How to Get Help
You can start your claims process by contacting an attorney’s office today. Many offer free, no-obligation consultations to discuss the merits of your case. Personal injury lawyers have dedicated their professional lives to fighting for rights of accident victims. Let an experienced professional help you, today.
Thanks to our friends and co-contributors at Cohen & Cohen, P.C. for their added insight into dangers of drowsy driving.