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Drowsy driving car accidents rise after time change

Missouri residents are undoubtedly accustomed to the changing of the clocks every spring and autumn. Commonly known as Daylight Saving Time, people will feel as if they gained an extra hour of sleep. This is viewed as beneficial because estimations say that fewer than a third of people are getting sufficient sleep. However, the time change is statistically linked to an increase in drowsy drivers and can cause car accidents. Those who are in a crash should be aware of this as a possible cause.

Research from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicates that the highest number of drowsy driving accidents occur from midnight to 6 a.m. or in the late-afternoon. Approximately 100,000 accidents reported to the police are deemed to have come about because of drowsy driving. A poll regarding drowsy driving found that 103 million people told the National Sleep Foundation that they fell asleep at the wheel.

Breaking it down into categories, 13 percent said they fall asleep while driving around one time each month. Four percent admitted to causing a car accident due to falling asleep at the wheel. Sixty percent of adult drivers said they have gotten behind the wheel while they were sleepy. Adults between the ages of 18 and 29--71 percent--say they are more likely to drive drowsy than other groups. Fifty-two percent of drivers ages 30 to 64 and 9 percent of those 65 and older said the same. Men drive drowsy more often than women, with 56 percent compared to 45 percent. Men fall asleep more often at 22 percent compared to 12 percent for women. Parents and adults who reside with children drive drowsy more frequently at 59 percent vs. those without children at 45 percent. People who work the night shift drive drowsy at 36 percent vs. those on regular hours at 25 percent.

It is also notable that most car accidents happen at night. When there is a car accident, there could be multiple causes. After the clocks have been moved back, it is known to be a time at which people get behind the wheel drowsy and are prone to having an accident. Those who are in a crash could have severe injuries, medical costs, lost time at work and even fatalities. A legal filing can help to recover compensation after such a crash. Drowsy driving could be an important point in the case and the crash reconstruction should check to see if this was a factor. A legal professional experienced in motor vehicle accidents can help with a claim.

Source: patch.com, "Daylight Saving Time Ends Sunday: Don't Forget To Fall Back," J. Ryne Danielson, Nov. 3, 2017

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