The road can be a dangerous place, and the state of Florida recognizes the fact that any motorized vehicle poses a potential threat to people and property. Auto accidents account for numerous injuries and deaths each year, resulting in significant financial expenses. All it takes is one careless or negligent action to put others’ lives at risk. Although the risk of an auto accident is always there, certain factors can increase that risk, including drugs, alcohol, and daylight savings. Yes, you read that right. Studies show an increase in car accidents following daylight savings. When the time is changed, sleep patterns are thrown off, and studies show that auto accidents are one of the consequences of this loss of sleep. To learn more about car accidents and daylight savings, contact our Daytona Beach practice today.
How Dangerous Is Daylight Savings?
Most people complain when daylight savings time rolls around. Few want to change the clock and risk throwing off the sleep pattern they have established. This is especially true in the spring, when daylight savings forces people to “spring forward,” often resulting in the loss of an hour of sleep. Unfortunately, a study conducted by the University of Colorado at Boulder has shown that the results of this loss of sleep can be deadly. Below are some of the key findings of this study:
- There is a significant increase in the occurrence of deadly motor vehicle accidents during the first six days following daylight savings
- Over a 10-year period there were 302 motor vehicle accident deaths during these six days and $2.75 billion in damages
- There is a 17% increase in motor vehicle accidents on the Monday following daylight savings
Sleep deprivation is believed to be the key cause of this increased risk. Most people have trouble adjusting sleep schedules and end up losing at least an hour of sleep. Sleep is one of the most important factors when it comes to being aware and alert while driving. In fact, an unrelated study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reported that people who get six to seven hours of sleep a night are twice as likely to be in an auto accident as those who get eight or more hours.
What to Do Following an Auto Accident
If you are involved in an auto accident, it is important to protect your rights. Collect information such as the name, registration, and insurance information from all drivers involved. Take notes regarding the accident that may be helpful when contacting your insurance provider. It is also important to file a report with the police, whether the accident was minor or serious. Finally, it is a good idea to contact a lawyer. Even though Florida is a no-fault state, victims of auto accidents who have suffered devastating losses may be due compensation. The attorneys at Chanfrau & Chanfrau can be extremely helpful during this difficult time.
If you’ve been involved in an auto accident and you have questions about your rights to financial compensation, our attorneys can help. Contact us at your earliest convenience to discuss the details of your accident. We look forward to hearing from you.