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Drowsy driving accident statistics

Drowsy driving may be a bigger problem in Georgia than official government statistics would suggest, according to a study that was conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. While official government statistics show that drowsy driving is a contributing factor in about 1-3 percent of all car accidents, in-depth studies reveal that drowsy drivers were involved in 21 percent of fatal car crashes that occurred between 2009 and 2013.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that drowsy drivers were involved in 2.5 percent of the fatal accidents that occurred between 2005 and 2009. In their report, AAA pointed out that the data used for these government statistics is gathered from reports written by police officers after they visit crash scenes. The government figures on drowsy driving are likely to be underestimates because the police officers who write the crash reports do not have a method for assessing driver drowsiness.

Rather than looking at all crash statistics, AAA looked at a representative sample of car crashes in which a trained accident investigator had evaluated driver drowsiness. AAA found that driver drowsiness was to blame for 13 percent of car accidents that led to a hospitalization and 7 percent of car accidents in which a car was towed from the scene.

A person who has been injured in a car accident involving a drowsy driver may choose to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver. Many car accident victims claim damages like medical bills, lost wages and vehicle repairs. When a drowsy driving accident causes a fatality, the deceased victim's family members may file a claim on their behalf.

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