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Driver fatigue: It can be avoided

As someone who has suffered at the hands of a truck driver, you know how dangerous the roads can be. You've dealt with the injuries of loved ones and injuries of your own. Sadly, much of the pain you've been through could have been prevented.

Drivers are meant to get enough sleep before they get behind the wheel. There are federal regulations that make it a requirement for them to get proper breaks and rest. Despite this, many people falsify their records or push their employees to get the job done. Doing that puts others at risk of harm.

When a driver is fatigued behind the wheel, it can quickly lead to an accident. The Large Truck Causation Survey reported that 13 percent of commercial drivers were fatigued at the time of crashes. They may have had extended work hours, a lack of sleep or other issues playing a role in their fatigue at the time.

How can drivers prevent these accidents? They can get enough sleep, for one thing. The body is naturally going to be more tired between 12 a.m. and 6 a.m. and again between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. During those hours, try to stay off the roads if possible, since there's a higher risk of an accident.

Having a good diet also helps. If you don't get enough to eat or have irregular meals, the lack of nutrition can lead to fatigue as well. If you go to bed after a heavy meal or without eating, both situations can lead to an interference in your sleep.

Drivers need to be aware of these risks to help avoid crashes. If you're hurt because a commercial driver didn't take breaks or rest as needed, your attorney can help.

Source: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, "CMV Driving Tips - Driver Fatigue," accessed May 10, 2017

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