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Study urges young drivers to get more sleep

10-02-2009

Teenage drivers should do more to combat fatigue and drowsiness, according to new research from the US by the National Sleep Foundation, Students Against Destructive Decisions and Liberty Mutual.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration claims that sleepiness when driving causes 100,000 police reported crashes, 71,000 injuries and 1550 deaths every year on the roads in America, and the issue has been found to be particularly prevalent in teenage drivers.

The NSF, SADD and Liberty Mutual study, which polled 3580 teenagers and organised 6 focus groups, showed that teen drivers need at least eight hours of sleep a night, and those who slept less than this were twice as likely to fall asleep while driving. The research also highlighted the fact that prosecutions and legal issues related to road accidents caused by drowsiness are not clear cut, and vary massively from state to state.

It is hoped that the findings will raise awareness of the subject and encourage more teen drivers to get the necessary sleep before heading out on the roads.

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