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Teen driver sleeps, injures woman in a car accident in Billings

Accidents can happen anywhere and at any time. People hear about accidents in every city and every town in the United States. The streets in Billings, Montana, can be perilous if a car accident occurs. A vehicle accident is not always between two vehicles; it often involves a vehicle and a pedestrian. A driver needs mental focus to ensure that no person's life on the road is at risk while that person is driving. Recently, a teenager caused an accident after falling asleep in the morning.

A sports utility vehicle driven by an unidentified 16-year-old teenager drifted onto a sidewalk after he fell asleep. The car struck a 49-year-old woman on the pavement near the intersection of North 29th Street and Sixth Avenue. Rescue personnel treated the woman as she cried out in pain and they later transported her to a local hospital. A police officer stated that the injuries were not life-threatening. The teenage driver was cited for an expired registration and careless driving.

Falling asleep while driving can cause a serious vehicle accident. Fortunately, in this case the injuries were not life-threatening. People often assume that distracted driving, drunk driving and failure to follow traffic rules are the major reasons for auto accidents. However, people usually overlook driver fatigue as a contributing factor.

According to a study, accidents associated with sleepiness often happen late at night or early in the morning. Driver fatigue can be caused by lifestyle, work or a medical condition. Additionally, it is more likely to happen when the driver is alone. A fatigue-related auto accident is likely to cause serious injury and may subsequently cause a large financial burden.

Putting the safety of others at risk is a form of negligence. Drivers who feel tired while they are driving need to remember that they may be liable for property damages and injuries. For the accident victims, a personal injury lawsuit may be filed to claim compensation that can cover many accident-related expenses.

Source: Billings Gazette, "Pedestrian injured when struck by SUV in downtown Billings," April 20, 2013

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