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Colorado Ranks 4th Most Dangerous For Drowsy Drivers

Colorado Springs man is falling asleep while driving

10 Signs A Driver Is Too Sleepy To Drive

If you've driven around lately, this may not be a surprise, but: Colorado recently ranked 4th on a national list of the most dangerous states for drowsy drivers.

In Colorado, falling asleep at the wheel or drowsy driving car accidents are becoming more common.

For example, in November, there was a fatal accident in which a corrections officer fell asleep at the wheel after work. The Colorado Springs man had just finished an overnight shift at the Limon Correctional Facility when he fell asleep while driving home, police said. As a result, the vehicle drifted across Hwy 24 near Calhan and collided head-on with a pickup truck, according to local news. The corrections officer was killed, and the truck driver was transported to a nearby hospital for treatment.

The Longo Firm, LLC knows that drowsy driving is reckless and that crash victims deserve maximum compensation. We are based in Colorado Springs and offer free case evaluations to those injured in crashes as well as the families of fatal car accident victims. If this is you, contact us now to get answers to your crash-related legal questions.

Drowsy driving is reckless driving.

Everyone gets worn out sometimes. And many individuals understand the plight of sleepy drivers. But every motorist has a responsibility to operate their vehicles safely for the benefit of other road users. It is against the law for drivers to get behind the wheel if they are not mentally or physically capable of doing so safely, regardless of their motivation.

Drowsy or fatigued driving is not safe. For example, some researchers equate getting behind the wheel after 20 hours without sleep to drunk driving.

In Colorado, drowsy driving is a factor in about 4.4 percent of fatal crashes, according to a ValuePenguin study. However, it is worth noting that this statistic is likely underreported. Few drivers admit it when their tiredness causes an accident. From 2016 to 2020, there were 126 reported deadly fatigued driving accidents in Colorado.

The problem may be getting worse. Colorado State Patrol (CSP) reported 27 lane violation crashes due to fatigue in 2020 and 59 such crashes in 2021. This is a 118 percent year-over-year increase.

10 signs someone is too tired to drive

CSP Troopers say that those most at risk for falling asleep behind the wheel are people who work nonstandard hours, like night shift workers and commercial truck drivers, and people with regularly disrupted sleep patterns.

"Operating a vehicle safely requires a person's full attention and focus," said CSP Chief Col. Matthew C. Packard." Fatigue physically and mentally impacts the abilities of a driver – it has effects on a driver's attention span, judgment, coordination and reaction time."

Signs that a person may be too tired to drive include:

  1. Heavy eyelids.
  2. Frequent yawning.
  3. Weaving back and forth between lanes.
  4. Unable to maintain the right speed.
  5. Trouble focusing and/or poor recall of the last few miles.
  6. Unable to keep an appropriate distance from other vehicles (tailgating).
  7. Slowed reaction time.
  8. Hitting the rumble strip.
  9. Drooping or nodding head.
  10. Missed exit signs and turns.

People who are too tired to drive safely may not realize just how bad their condition is. If you notice signs of a drowsy driver, the best thing to do is tell the driver they are not okay to drive. If they are already driving, encourage them to find a safe place to pull over right away and take a break from driving. The CSP recommends taking a 20-minute nap.

The Longo Firm holds negligent drivers accountable

No matter if your accident was caused by a drowsy driver, drunk driver, red-light-runner, speeder, or another type of negligent driver, injured crash victims have legal rights under Colorado law. The Longo Firm, LLC can help you protect them. Our firm builds strong cases that demand maximum compensation.

We take on the insurance companies and negotiate aggressively for your medical expenditures, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

The key to winning an accident claim is to act quickly. We want to start investigating your accident before evidence like surveillance video, witnesses able to recall the events, and physical crash evidence disappear.

If you were injured or a loved one died in a Colorado Springs car accident or a crash in another part of the state, contact The Longo Firm, LLC, for a free evaluation. A member of our team can answer your crash-related legal questions and help you decide what to do next.

Attorney Longo represents accident victims on contingency. That means there is no upfront or out-of-pocket expense. Plus, if we don't win, you don't pay.

We are ready to hear from you anytime, day or night. Contact us to schedule your free case evaluation today.

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