West Virginia drivers must get appropriate sleep and rest before they drive. If not, they are a risk to themselves and other drivers on the road. What they may not know is the degree of danger that they pose. Fatigued drivers can be every bit as dangerous as drunk drivers.
The number of drivers who admit to falling asleep behind the wheel is alarming. One in five drivers say that they have dozed off while driving just in the past year alone. Drivers do not need to fall asleep for more than a few seconds to become a risk. All it takes is nodding off momentarily, and the driver can either lose control of their vehicle or miss an opportunity to avoid a serious accident. The danger is compounded on a highway when the driver is traveling faster.
When a driver has not slept in 20 hours or more, it is the equivalent of operating their car with a .08 blood-alcohol level. This is the legal limit in most states. In fact, there are roughly 100,000 crashes each year that have involved drowsy driving. Fatality estimates for these crashes are around 5,000, with many serious injuries. Thus, when a driver gets behind the wheel without getting proper sleep, it risks their life as well as the safety of every other driver around them on the road.
Those who have been injured in these accidents may be entitled to financial compensation for their injuries and damage that they have suffered. They would need to show that the other driver was negligent and caused their injuries. They should retain a motor vehicle accidents attorney to represent them in the process of obtaining compensation. The attorney might assist them with filing the claim and negotiating a settlement agreement that would compensate them.