Possibly fatigued driver in Louisiana causes three-car crash
A tragic accident on Interstate 310 by Louisiana 3127 has brought renewed focus to the problem of fatigued driving on Louisiana's roads. The accident involved three vehicles and resulted in two fatalities and multiple injuries.
The incident occurred after a vehicle stopped by the side of the road to help another that was stranded due to mechanical issues. While the two cars were stopped, another motorist going south on Interstate 310 drove outside of his lane and onto the right shoulder of the road. He hit the car with mechanical problems, pushing it off the shoulder altogether. He then hit the driver of the other vehicle, who was outside helping to fix the malfunctioning car.
A woman sitting in the back of the broken vehicle and the driver helping to fix the car were both killed. In addition, five people were transported to nearby hospitals to treat minor injuries.
Police on the scene indicated they suspected fatigue contributed to the car accident. Although toxicology tests were conducted, the police did not state that they suspected any other type of impairment to have contributed to the collision.
Avoid motor vehicle accidents caused by driver fatigue
Fatigue leads to a large number of auto accidents every year, with some estimates indicating as many as 56,000 such crashes occur in the U.S. annually. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported that approximately 40,000 people sustain injuries and another 1,550 are killed in accidents caused by fatigued drivers every year.
To prevent such dangerous collisions, drivers should take measures to ensure they are fit to operate a motor vehicle. Most obviously, it is critical that people ensure they get a good night's sleep when they know they will have to drive the following day. One of the demographics most at risk of causing an accident due to fatigue is people who suffer from sleep apnea and narcolepsy, but fail to seek treatment. When sleep disorders cause fatigue, it may be necessary to take action beyond attempting to get a good night's sleep. For some people, medical attention may be necessary.
Drivers should not get behind the wheel if they are taking medication that causes drowsiness. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 17 percent of commercial motor vehicle drivers who were involved in accidents were using over-the-counter medications at the time.
Above all, when behind the wheel, if a driver begins to experience symptoms of drowsiness, it is best to pull off to the side of the road to take a nap or change drivers rather than risk the chance of causing a collision.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash caused by a fatigued driver, a skilled Louisiana personal injury attorney will ensure just compensation is received.