Most Connecticut readers do everything they can to drive safely and avoid car crashes. However, accidents still happen and knowing what to do in the moments following a collision can be very important for insurance claims and any potential legal action.
Connecticut drivers who often find themselves drowsy behind the wheel should consider the danger that they pose. Drowsy driving, after all, is responsible for many auto accidents every year. Sleep deprivation, in its effect, is similar to alcohol. Going without sleep for 24 hours is like having a blood alcohol content of .10, well above the legal limit.
There are many ways in which a person in Connecticut can be killed in a drunk driving accident. In some cases, one can go into shock from losing too much blood in a short period of time. It is also possible for someone to bleed out from a massive cut or other open wound. Individuals who are struck by a vehicle could be killed because of blunt force trauma.
The car parts manufacturer ZF Group has released some safety data that could get automakers to consider the benefits of external airbags. However, Connecticut residents should know that external airbags, like self-driving cars, are far from being perfected, much less implemented on vehicles.
Chances are high that many drivers in Connecticut have not gotten a good night's sleep. Results from multiple surveys show that about one-third of people fail to sleep at least seven hours each night. Health experts recommend that adults sleep for seven to nine hours a night. Sleep deprivation impedes people's ability to operate a vehicle safely. Drowsy drivers contribute to about 7 percent of all motor vehicle accidents. Among fatal crashes, as many as 16 percent of them arise from sleep-deprived drivers.
Car safety technologies can help Connecticut drivers to avoid accidents and injuries. However, in many cases, they may not understand how these advanced systems work and may tend to overestimate their capacities, according to a study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. Fetures like blind-spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise control can be great tools for drivers in staying safe on the roads, but many drivers expect too much from these systems.
A report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety concluded that rear automatic braking in newer vehicle models can reduce the number of backup crashes by 62 percent. Connecticut residents with a recent model will want to see if rear autobrakes are an option, though it is a fact that they are only available on 5 percent of new vehicle models.
People who drive on back roads in Connecticut may encounter dangerous traffic intersections. Some rural roads with high speed limits of up to 55 mph may come together with only a stop sign. These locations are often prone to experiencing severe and even deadly car accidents. However, a number of traffic safety experts are recommending the use of roundabouts or traffic circles as a way to make these junction points safer for drivers.
The hazards of drunk driving are well known to people in Connecticut. However, drowsy driving can be just as dangerous. To educate the public about the impairment caused by sleep deprivation, a safety engineer from Chevrolet is touring cities with a drowsy driving simulation. The simulation invites people to put on a 23-pound suit and goggles that make them experience the sensation of driving while on the verge of falling asleep.
Smartphones, built-in infotainment systems and automated features are changing the way people in Connecticut drive, so it's no wonder that distracted driving is such a widespread issue. At the same time, the number of fatal car accidents is going up, and though the two trends have not been definitely linked, they are clearly not coincidental.