WJHG reports that two people were injured after the driver of a semi-truck fell asleep on Interstate-10 early this month. According to a FHP report, a 29 year old male was driving a semi-truck west on I-10 around 2:30 a.m. near State Road 77 when he fell asleep. The semi drifted into the center grass median before crossing into westbound lanes and onto the north shoulder, where it hit several trees down the embankment.
The driver of the semi was air lifted to Bay Medical Center with serious injuries. His passenger, a 60 male from Hollywood, Fla. was taken to Northwest Florida Regional Hospital with minor injuries. Neither the driver nor the passenger of the semi was wearing a seat belt. The driver of the semi is charged with careless driving.
Did you know that truck-related deaths hit a low during the economic slump of 2009, when 2,983 truck accidents killed 3,380 people. But as the economy has improved, truck-related deaths have been on the rise. In 2013, the most recent year for which solid statistics are available, 3,541 wrecks killed 3,964 people – an increase of 17.3 percent in just four years. In 2014, the number of deaths resulting from truck accidents was down slightly, but the total number of crashes and injuries increased.
The Huffington Post did a recent article pertaining to sleep and semi-truck drivers. They noted there is mounting evidence which shows that sleep apnea can cause hazardous levels of fatigue in semi-truck drivers, among others who need to remain alert at work. The airways of people who suffer from apnea close repeatedly while they sleep, interrupting their breathing dozens of times an hour. They often don’t notice the interruptions, but it leaves them exhausted and prone to doze off during the day. Behind the wheel of a large, speeding vehicle, the results are predictably catastrophic, just as they were in the accident mentioned above.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident with a semi-truck, contact us at Brannon & Brannon for a free consultation (850)659-2252 or through our website at www.brannoncanhelp.com .