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Drowsy driving still a problem, especially for Texas

It's happened to everyone. You've been behind the wheel for several hours, cruising down the interstate, and the scenery isn't changing. You're eyelids begin to droop, and you may close them for a second. And before you know it, your drowsiness has caused a car accident. And a new study shows that Texans are the drowsiest drivers in the nation.

According to the study, performed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of every 24 drivers said that they dozed off at some point while driving in the last month. While it may only be for a second before your brain figures out what is happening, that second can make the difference.

  - Article By Richard Weaver

According to the study, Texas had the highest drowsy driving rate in the nation, at 6.1 percent. The lowest state had a rate of 2.5 percent. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2 percent of crashes are caused by someone being too sleepy to drive.

And one physician described the effects that lack of sleep could have on a driver as equal to someone who is driving with a blood alcohol content that is above the legal limit.

An epidemiologist with the CDC described the warning signs as yawning, missing turns and being unable to drive your car in a straight line. And the only reliable remedy is to get the right amount of sleep.

It's important for Houston readers to remember that continuing to drive while sleepy is your own fault. If you see yourself exhibiting the behaviors of a drowsy driver, get off the road. You can be held at fault for an accident that you cause.

Source: ABC News, "1 in 24 Americans Drives Drowsy, CDC Says," Katie Moisse, Jan. 3, 2012

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