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Are pedestrians at risk in the city that never sleeps?

Although drivers may acknowledge the importance of being alert behind the wheel, a new study suggests that many might underestimate the dangers of drowsy driving.

Specifically, a report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Study indicates that the risk of a motor vehicle crash may double when drivers receive only five or six hours of sleep, compared to a well rested driver who sleeps seven or more hours. For five or fewer hours of sleep, the rate of risk increases to four times the average crash rate. According to one commentator, a rate of risk that is four times above the norm is comparable to drunk driving.

Unfortunately, Americans seem to operate on inadequate sleep. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over one-third of Americans fail to get at least seven hours of sleep on a regular basis. Unfortunately, that perpetual fatigue comes with consequences: Other research has attributed around 20 percent of all fatal motor vehicle crashes to a drowsy driver.

In New York City, residents work hard and often play even harder. The city has a reputation for never sleeping for good reason. Yet productivity and safety would be better served by a more responsible approach to sleep habits. Pedestrians need to be alert in this city, and drivers should not underestimate their responsibilities when navigating Manhattan’s crowded streets and hectic traffic patterns.

Unfortunately, not everyone heeds this advice. If you have suffered life-altering injuries because of a drowsy driver, you will need an experienced personal injury attorney to obtain compensation for your emotional and financial needs. Our New York City law firm has the experience to fight hard for your rights in the aftermath of a car or pedestrian accident. Contact our office for a free consultation.

Source: NPR, “Drivers Beware: Crash Rate Spikes With Every Hour Of Lost Sleep,” Allison Aubrey, Dec. 6, 2016

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