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Technology might make Tennessee drivers safer

Vehicle manufacturers are moving to include features that make Tennessee roads safer from drivers who might succumb to fatigue. Automakers and other companies have tested a range of devices, including cars that track body activity and driving behavior or trigger alarms to prevent drivers from falling asleep behind the wheel. Some commercial transportation companies are following suit by equipping their operators with such technology, but according to researchers, the dire consequences associated with falling asleep behind the wheel mean it's better to simply avoid driving when tired.

High-profile accidents involving trucks, such as the 2014 incident that injured Tracy Morgan, aren't the only source of concern for modern drivers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 25 percent of fatal collisions are related to tiredness, and researchers admit that the problem can affect everyone on the road, especially at night. Factors like sleeping schedules or general drowsiness also contribute by making people less likely to pay attention or react in time to prevent accidents.

Some research indicates that the use of systems that detect when drivers drift out of their lanes may lead to a 40 percent decrease in the incidence of vehicles going off of the road. Collision-warning systems may contribute to a 10 percent drop in rear-end accidents. One analyst at the University of Michigan notes, however, that the numbers of sleepy drivers on the road has likely risen.

Car accident victims often face mounting medical bills, and in many cases they are forced to miss work for prolonged periods, putting even more of a strain on their finances. Those who have been injured in an accident that was caused by the negligence of another driver may want to speak with a personal injury attorney to see what options are available for pursuing compensation.

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