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Driver fatigue may be a factor in a fatal accident in Rogers

Several months ago, this blog discussed the problem of people in Minnesota falling asleep while driving. Now it appears that the death of a pedestrian in a fatal accident in Rogers may have been the result of a drowsy driver.

According to police, at around 5:15 in the evening on May 25, a 20-year-old man from Dayton, Minnesota, crossed the median on Rogers Drive in his vehicle and struck a pedestrian. The pedestrian, a 49-year-old truck driver, died immediately.

The driver said that he may have nodded off behind the wheel just before the accident, according to investigators. He was taken into custody and administered a test to determine if he was under the influence of controlled substances. Police have said that they do not believe alcohol was a factor in the fatal car crash.

Motorists in Minnesota must be vigilant about the possibility of driver fatigue interfering with their driving. Studies have indicated that people in certain risk categories are more likely to doze off while driving. People who get six hours of sleep per night, or less, are more likely to report falling asleep behind the wheel. People who work non-traditional hours are also susceptible, according to the survey.

The study also showed that people who tend to fall asleep during the day were more likely to sleep while driving. People who have issues with snoring while sleeping are another group that has been identified as more likely to have this problem.

By avoiding driving when they are sleepy, all drivers can reduce the chances of nodding off and being held liable for the wrongful death of pedestrians and other drivers. Negligent drivers may have to pay substantial damages to victims or to victims' families.

Source: Star Tribune, "Car kills trucker walking along a frontage road near I-94 in Rogers," Tom Meersman, May 26, 2013

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