In the State of California, drowsy driving is the cause of thousands of accidents. Drowsy driving is the act of driving when a person is too tired to do so with the expected amount of attention and care.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are approximately 1,550 deaths nationwide that can be attributed to drivers who are too tired to operate their vehicles safely. People at risk for drowsy driving, according to the NHTSA, include:
Studies have shown that a person who gets behind the wheel after having been awake for 18 hours drives similarly to a person who has a blood alcohol concentration of .05. A person who has been awake for 24 hours and chooses to drive does so with the same efficacy of someone who has a blood alcohol concentration of .10. The legal limit of alcohol in the blood in every state is .08. This means that a person who stays awake for 24 hours and chooses to drive has the same reaction time and focusing ability as someone who is legally intoxicated.
Drowsy driving may not be a specific crime, but it is something that should be avoided. Crash victims who have been involved in drowsy driving crashes have been awarded thousands in personal injury cases.