Anyone can be injured in an auto accident, especially when commuting to and from Atlanta, Georgia. Perhaps you were in a crash yourself and found out that the other driver had grown inattentive through drowsiness or actually fallen asleep behind the wheel. Unfortunately, drowsy driving crashes are among the most widespread.

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety estimates their number at around 328,000 every year. Of these crashes, 109,000 result in injuries and 6,400 in death. Those that end in injury or death cost society around $109 billion each year, and that’s not including property damage.

How drowsiness is impairing

Drowsiness makes one inattentive, unable to make correct judgments and slow in reacting. In serious cases of drowsiness, one begins to experience four- or five-second bursts of inattention called microsleep. A driver going at highway speed would, unaware, travel the length of a football field during a microsleep episode.

Drowsiness can become just as impairing as alcohol intoxication. Being awake for 20 hours straight is like having a blood alcohol concentration at the legal limit of .08%. The National Sleep Foundation says that fatigue triples the risk for a car crash.

Ways to prevent drowsy driving

Drowsy driving can be prevented with adequate sleep. If this still leads to drowsiness, one may have sleep apnea or another sleep disorder. Other interventions can be considered to address drowsy driving, such as the installation of lane departure warning and other crash avoidance technology on one’s car.

Half or more drowsy driving crash initiators are under 25, so parents of teen drivers and universities should do their part as well. Universities, for example, could set up educational programs that motivate students to be safer drivers.

A lawyer to help you recover damages

Many victims of motor vehicle accidents are left with injuries and medical bills as well as without a vehicle. If you file a personal injury claim with legal help, though, you may be able to achieve a reasonable amount in compensatory damages.