A lot of truck drivers in Atlanta get behind the wheel when drowsy. Unfortunately, this can increase their risk of causing a serious truck accident. Usually, truck drivers work several hours and have irregular schedules, resulting in sleep deprivation and fatigue.
Drowsy driving can impair a trucker’s reaction times and ability to make decisions, putting themselves and other road users at risk. However, truck accidents that result from drowsy driving is quite common, leading to severe injuries, substantial economic costs, and fatalities. If you have been a victim of this kind of accident, you need an Atlanta truck accident lawyer who can help you pursue the monetary compensation you need.
How Driver Fatigue Impacts Truck Drivers
Sleep is important to maintaining cognitive and physical function. If a truck driver doesn’t get enough sleep, they may not be able to safely drive a truck. Sleep-deprived drivers may experience different effects such as the following:
- Impaired reaction times. When a trucker is deprived of quality sleep, their reaction time can be affected, which makes it difficult to react to road situations that occur unexpectedly. This can lead to delayed braking or swerving, resulting in accidents.
- Reduced alertness. Truck drivers who lack sleep can experience reduced attention and alertness, causing them to miss essential signs and road signals. As a result, they can make wrong turns, miss exits, or commit other mistakes that can lead to accidents.
- Cognitive and memory impairment. Sleep deprivation can impair cognitive function and memory, which makes it hard for truckers to recall vital information or follow instructions.
- Poor decision-making. Drivers who are sleep-deprived may find it hard to make good decisions like determining when to safely pass another vehicle or change lanes. Also, they may take risks that can result in accidents.
Overall, a lack of sleep can severely limit the ability of a trucker to safely drive their vehicles. To minimize the risk of accidents related to driver fatigue, truckers should prioritize getting enough and quality sleep. Also, employers should implement policies that make sure truckers get sufficient rest periods.
What Injured Victims Should Do
Right after a truck accident, you must contact 911 and answer questions from the responding police officers. If you think the accident resulted from driver fatigue, ensure you report such concerns to the police. Also, seek medical attention immediately even if you feel you are not injured. Once you feel such needs, contact a skilled truck accident attorney. If you can provide enough evidence that shows driver fatigue caused the crash, you may be able to get significant compensation.