According to local law enforcement, the Monday morning crash in Sayreville was the result of a driver dozing off behind the wheel. A woman was coming off a 12-hour overnight shift and fell asleep during her drive home when she rear-ended a parked State Police car. She was not criminally charged and it is not known whether or not she was issued a ticket.
In light of this new information, we are reminded of the dangers associated with drowsy driving.
According to a 2016 report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 100,000 accidents can be directly attributed to drowsy driving each year. The NHTSA further claims that drowsiness behind the wheel can be just as dangerous as drinking and driving.
To further drive the point home, AAA Northeast states that drowsy driving is estimated to be a factor in 20 percent of fatal crashes. According to Robert Sinclair, Jr., manager of media relations for AAA Northeast, “Our new research shows that getting less than five hours sleep is the same as driving drunk.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 1 in 3 adults don’t get enough sleep. It is recommended that adults sleep at least 7 hours each night to ensure the best health and well-being.
How many people are actually this diligent about their sleeping habits? With the demands of work and family, are we truly upholding our responsibility to ourselves and others to get enough sleep? Rest is not a luxury - it is a necessity. These reports are prove positive that sleepless nights and restless days are catastrophically affecting society at large.
So what is a nation of overworked and underslept commuters supposed to do?