Drowsy Driving Accounts for 10% of Crashes

Drowsy Driving Accounts for 10% of Crashes

Drowsy Driving
Local numbers show top 10 counties for drowsy driving in New York State
Elizabeth Carey

A new study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety shows that 9.5 percent of all crashes and 10.8 percent of crashes resulting in significant property damage involved drowsiness. Federal estimates indicate drowsiness is a factor in only one to two percent of crashes. The new study is the most in-depth drowsy driving research ever conducted in the U.S. using footage of everyday drivers. It finds that the percentage of crashes involving drowsiness is nearly eight times higher than federal estimates.

AAA broke down numbers from New York State and found that in 2016, there were 4,600 crashes reported to involve drowsy driving (contributing factors “fell asleep” and/or “fatigued/drowsy.”) That’s equivalent to 1.5% of all crashes in New York.

·         3,543 crashes coded as “fell asleep”

·         1,272 crashes coded as “fatigued/drowsy”

·         (212 crashes coded as both)

·         “Fell asleep” contributed to 10 fatal crashes and 1,667 personal injury crashes

Top 10 counties for drowsy driving crashes:

·         Suffolk – 386

·         Nassau – 266

·         Westchester – 224

·         Erie – 165

·         Orange – 163

·         Queens – 148

·         Monroe – 126

·         Dutchess – 121

·         Kings – 109

·         Onondaga – 89

Those 4,600 crashes included:

·         204 collisions with trees

·         141 collisions with an earth embankment/rock cut/ditch

·         127 collisions with a light support/utility pole

·         77 collisions with a sign post

·         26 collisions with a building/wall

·         12 collisions with a fire hydrant

Difficulty in detecting drowsiness following a crash makes drowsy driving one of the most underreported traffic safety issues. The new research provides an unprecedented analysis of in-vehicle dashcam video from more than 700 crashes, confirming that the danger of drowsy driving soars above official estimates. B-roll Video: 1 |2 (password: aaa)