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Late-night driving risks

by | Nov 11, 2022 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Only some people work a traditional 9-to-5 schedule, as many professionals are assigned to the night shift. Commuting to and from work during nighttime hours in California has its challenges. Driving late at night involves safety risks that could lead to a collision.

Night shift driving

A person who works odd hours into the night may experience nagging fatigue. Researchers note many late-night workers suffer from shift work sleep disorder (SWSD), meaning they may battle chronic fatigue due to their unique sleeping patterns. Research conducted at the University of Missouri suggests people with SWSD are 300 times more likely to nearly miss or cause an auto accident.

The likely reason why someone with SWSD could cause a crash is tiredness. When someone feels excessively sleepy, they may find it difficult to react in time when necessary. Fatigue might drag down perceptions and alertness to the point it mimics intoxicated driving.

Some drivers could lose their battle with fatigue and fall asleep at the wheel. Passing out while driving may lead to a fatal accident.

A basis for negligence

Shift workers might prevent car accidents in California by not getting behind the wheel when they feel drowsy or impaired. Taking public transportation or contacting a rideshare service may get someone home safely. Those choosing to drive while exhausted might face a liability claim for any accidents they cause.

A tired driver might cross a double line and veer into oncoming traffic. Or, the driver may not see a jogger or bicyclist when making a turn. Such accidents may leave victims with serious injuries. Fatigue won’t likely serve as an excuse for causing an accident. Someone who knows they are too tired to drive puts others at risk when getting behind the wheel.