After colliding into the back of a Houston Police Department cruiser on the Katy Freeway early Thursday, a driver reportedly told police that he was sleepy.
The collision took place at about 2:30am near the Eldridge Parkway exit of the Katy Freeway. The officer whose vehicle was struck was blocking two westbound lanes of traffic on the freeway because of an earlier accident, waiting until the scene could be cleared and the lanes reopened. As the officer waited in his patrol car, a minivan with an older man behind the wheel slammed into the rear of his vehicle. The officer was sent to the hospital with minor injuries.
The driver of the minivan told officers at the scene that he was tired and may have dozed off. He was taken into custody for a blood draw, but officers believe that alcohol was not involved.
As evidenced in the above accident, driving while tired can be just as dangerous as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or driving while distracted. If you get behind the wheel when you are sleep deprived or try to drive late into the night or in the early hours of the morning, when you are usually sleeping, you may find it difficult to concentrate on the task at hand. You may find your attention drifting from the road, your eyes closing and may even doze off, as the driver in the above accident claimed may have occurred.
Although the officer only suffered minor injuries in Thursday's collision, the consequences could have been far worse. If the officer had been standing outside of the vehicle, for example, he would have been at a far greater risk of injury. If the minivan had been traveling at a higher rate of speed or had struck other vehicles, the driver of the van and others could have been injured as well. That is why we must stress the importance of staying alert and keeping your attention focused while driving.
If you were involved in a car accident, truck accident or other type of traffic collision involving a tired driver, now is the time to talk to a Houston car accident lawyer at Stern Law Group about your legal options. We can help you determine how to seek financial compensation for your injuries, to cover medical expenses, lost wages and other losses or bills you are dealing with. For a free case review, please call our offices.