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What are some other causes of drowsy driving?

Motor vehicle crashes have many causes, some of which receive a lot of attention in online groups and media reports. For example, many people hear about the dangers of driving drunk. However, there are a wide variety of dangerous behaviors that can lead to a collision, such as drowsy driving. Moreover, drivers can become drowsy for various reasons and it is important for people to make sure that they are vigilant when they get behind the wheel.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has provided useful information concerning drowsy driving. Obviously, drivers can become drowsy when they do not get enough sleep. However, other factors contribute to the prevalence of drowsy driving, such as those who work lengthy shifts or night shifts, commercial drivers, those who take certain types of medication which cause drowsiness, and people who suffer from sleep disorders. For drivers, recognizing the warning signs of drowsiness and addressing behaviors that cause fatigue is essential.

Distracted driving can kill or injure innocent people

Missouri drivers count on everyone else on the road to drive safely. Without everyone drivers committing to safety behind the wheel, lives are endangered. One cause of highway accidents is distracted driving.

Distracted drivers cause trouble for many people each day. Across the country, more than 1,000 people are injured and approximately nine are killed daily in crashes related to distracted driving. Below is information related to this serious problem.

Woman killed by trucker on shoulder of freeway

People in Missouri know that sharing the road with tractor trailers, dump trucks and other large commercial vehicles can be extremely dangerous. Fatigue, impairment, distraction, vehicle malfunction and more may all contribute to serious accidents in which innocent people are injured or even killed through no fault of their own.

Today a man from Kansas City who was employed as a driver of a semi truck is facing felony charges for vehicular homicide after he hit and killed a pedestrian in neighboring Nebraska. The accident happened in the early morning hours along a stretch of Interstate 80. A vehicle had become disabled after it hit a deer and the driver and passenger were waiting for a tow truck to come and assist them.

Recovering from spinal damage

Missouri residents who get into car accidents can be left with severe, debilitating injuries. For example, anything involving the brain and spinal cord can take a long time to heal from and may have lasting complications.

Mayo Clinic states that there are both complete and incomplete spinal cord injuries. Complete means that there is no feeling, motor function, or sensation below the affected break in the spine. Incomplete means that some sensory or motor function remains. The severity of an incomplete injury can differ from person to person. In some cases, movement and sensation can be restored to the affected areas. In others, there is a permanent loss of movement, or permanent damage to the nerves.

What dangers do other drivers pose to you?

Missouri motorcyclists are at a constant disadvantage while on the road. Not only are you less protected than the drivers of covered vehicles, but the small size of your motorcycle often makes it difficult for other drivers to spot you in the first place. 

The National Safety Council asks drivers if they ever think about motorcycles, due to the fact that motorcycle unawareness plays a large role in the dangers that cars possess to motorcyclists. It's stated that in the majority of accidents involving both motorcycles and covered vehicles, the driver of the vehicle is the one who has violated the right of way of the motorcyclist. This could be for many reasons, including not spotting the motorcycle, being unable to anticipate the motorcyclist's movements, and the motorcycle being blocked from view.

How many people die in car crashes in Missouri?

If you ever listen to local reports about car accidents in which people have died in Missouri and wonder just how many times this really happens every year, you are not alone. Traffic fatalities sadly continue to plague area roads and highways despite improvements being made in vehicle safety and stronger laws.

Records provided from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show that the state has experienced an increase in the number of vehicular fatalties every year for the past several years. In 2014, the 766 deaths represented a slight increase over the 757 in 2013. Then in 2015 a substantial jump was seen as 870 deaths in car accidents occurred. In 2016 another significant increase was seen as the fatality count rose to 945 statewide. 

Can you get a brain injury in a motorcycle accident?

When you are involved in a motorcycle accident in Missouri, you may worry about injuries such as fractures and sprains. Sometimes the most serious wounds are the one you cannot see, though. It is important to recognize the signs of a brain injury so you can seek medical attention.

According to Mayfield Brain and Spine, you might suffer a brain injury if your head receives a sudden blow during a collision. The symptoms you experience usually depend on the severity of your wound, as well as the part of your brain that is injured. Sometimes you might experience headaches and feel dizzy. In other situations, you may lose consciousness or have temporary amnesia. You might also have problems sleeping and paying attention.  

Information you need to gather at the scene of the accident

Documenting the scene of a car accident is something that many people leave to the police officers who respond to the call. While it is important to leave things where they are until the officers arrive, you can take steps to document the scene on your own just in case you decide to seek compensation.

Filing a claim for compensation is the first step to take if the accident wasn't your own fault. Having the documentation to back up your case can help. There are a few things that you can do to gather evidence that won't impact the police officer's job. Here are some to consider:

What should you know about the dangers of logging trucks?

Logging is a necessary industry in our economy. People across the country rely on timber for their homes, furniture and other items. How does raw timber get from the forests of Missouri and elsewhere to various destinations? Like many other items that are shipped across the United States, large trucks are usually involved. As you know, commercial trucks are a factor in many accidents.

The United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics points out that the timber industry is one of the most dangerous professions in the country. Logging workers face numerous dangers, from cutting down trees to transporting cargo on trucks. However, your safety can also be at risk around logging trucks, as the following points illustrate:

  • An unbalanced load might cause the chains securing logs to break, or the truck to tip or jackknife.
  • Overhanging cargo might be unstable or present a risk to nearby traffic.
  • If a logging truck is inadequately flagged or poorly illuminated and is not sufficiently visible to drivers, an accident might occur.
  • Common truck driver hazards, such as fatigue, distraction and speed, are as prevalent among logging trucks as any other big rig.

Tesla owners: Autopilot does not mean self-driving

Recently in California, the owner of a Tesla Model S crashed into a fire engine on the highway. Authorities said the man had been using the vehicle’s Autopilot driver assistance system at the time of the crash. Nobody was injured, but the incident raises awareness about the potential dangers of using new technology without fully understanding its purpose and limitations. Tesla owners in Missouri and elsewhere have a responsibility to properly and safely use the Autopilot feature in their vehicles.

Issues involving Tesla’s Autopilot are not new. According to CNBC, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Traffic Safety Board investigated the technology after numerous accidents associated with the Autopilot system, including one fatality in Florida. Neither administration found any defects in the technology; rather, the lack of driver knowledge or the system’s limitations were deemed responsible. For example, the cameras located in numerous places around the vehicle may be hampered by debris, making Autopilot less effective. A driver may also believe “autopilot” means he or she can turn on the system and let the vehicle drive itself, which is simply untrue.

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