How do drowsy truckers make the road more dangerous?

On Behalf of | Dec 3, 2020 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Virginia drivers like you share the road with plenty of other vehicles. You see everyone from bicyclists to motorcycles, all the way up to big rigs. But the big rigs are the vehicles that pose the biggest threat. 

On top of that, many truckers you pass might also suffer from drowsiness. How prevalent is drowsy driving among truckers and why is it such a big risk? 

Truckers are generally sleep-deprived

The Sleep Foundation examines the impact drowsy driving has on road safety. In specific, they cite a congressional study carried out on 80 American and Canadian truckers. In this study, truckers averaged about 5 hours of sleep a night. This is far below the recommended average that doctors suggest. 

Drowsiness is a big issue in the trucking industry for many reasons. Some chalk it up to the machismo culture, in which it is uncouth to complain about exhaustion. Others believe it comes from employers disregarding employee safety for profit. 

Why are drowsy truckers dangerous?

Regardless of the reason, drowsy truckers pose a huge danger to everyone on the road. This is due to the size and weight of their vehicle. The National Transportation Safety Board estimated over 50 percent of trucker fatalities come from drowsiness. But unfortunately, the fatality rate for other drivers is even higher. They speculate that 3 to 4 other drivers die for every trucker death. 

These statistics give you a little glimpse into the true deadliness of drowsy driving behaviors among truckers. If you get involved in a crash with one, you may wish to consider your options for seeking compensation, as you likely faced catastrophic damages.