AAA Texas: 10 percent of crashes caused by drowsy drivers

El Paso News

A new report from AAA found that the number of crashes caused by sleepy drivers is eight times higher than federal estimates.

Using dashcam video from more than 700 crashes, researchers analyzed drivers’ faces in the three minutes leading up to a crash – looking to see how long drivers kept their eyes closed before the accident.

According to AAA, 9.5 percent of all crashes and 10.8 percent of crashes resulting in significant property damage involved drowsiness. Federal estimates indicate drowsiness is a factor in only one to two percent of crashes.  

Nearly 10,000 crashed involved sleepy drivers, according to data from the Texas Department of Transportation.

AAA spokesperson Daniel Armbruster said, “One of the reasons why AAA is releasing this new study is and information from it is to create more awareness about the dangers of drowsy driving.”

Armbruster added, “If you miss just a few hours of sleep each night, you can quadruple your risk of a crash and that’s similar to statistics we would see of someone who is driving under the influence of alcohol.”

AAA recommends getting seven hours of sleep before driving long distances and taking a break every 100 miles.

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