Justice Starts Here

Premier Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Attorneys

Free Consultations | Se Habla Español
Rapoport Law Offices, P.C.
312-445-9160
877-216-4213

A Little Known Cause Of Many Automobile Crashes: Sleep Apnea

According to the American Sleep Apnea Association (ASAA), undiagnosed or untreated sleep apnea can significantly increase a driver's potential to be involved in serious automobile crashes. The National Institute on Health's Heart, Lung and Blood Institute describes sleep apnea as a condition that causes a person to experience periodic pauses between breaths or very shallow breathing during sleep. The breathing pauses can last from seconds to minutes, and can occur anywhere from 5 to 30 times an hour. For chronic sufferers, the episodes appear 3 or more nights a week, moving the person constantly from deep to light sleep.

Sleep apnea often goes undiagnosed. Doctors usually can't detect the condition, and there are no blood tests for it. Most people who have sleep apnea don't know they have it because it only occurs during sleep. The most common type of sleep apnea is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). This most often means that the person's airway has collapsed or is blocked during sleep. The blockage causes the shallow breathing or breathing pauses, which results in the person's sleep being disrupted several times a night. The constant sleep disturbance causes a person with sleep apnea to experience excessive daytime sleepiness, resulting in a slower response time and lack of focus. The excessive tiredness is what can spell disaster behind the wheel.

The ASAA lists the following statistics on OSA and the impact it has on driver safety:

  • OSA afflicts at least 20 million Americans...more than asthma or diabetes, and yet more than 85% remain undiagnosed.
  • People with OSA tend to have high blood pressure, heart problems, stroke, depression and sexual dysfunction with annual health care costs TWO TIMES HIGHER than those without OSA.
  • People with OSA are SIX times more likely to have a crash and SEVEN TIMES more likely to have multiple accidents.
  • More than 800,000 drivers were involved in OSA-related car crashes in 2000, costing more than $15.9 billion in damage claiming 1,400 lives.
  • It's estimated that if all drivers with OSA were treated, $11.1B in damages could be saved, along with 980 lives each year.
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY, accident and health risks return to NORMAL when individuals are diagnosed and treated for OSA.

On May 11 and 12, The ASAA held its Sleep Apnea and Trucking Conference in Baltimore, Maryland. Co-sponsored by the American Trucking Association (ATA) and the Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the ASAA declared the Conference's goal as "bringing together trucking, regulatory, medical, insurance, legal and policy experts to provide accurate and reliable information about OSA diagnosis, treatment and compliance." According to the ASAA website, the Conference sought address key issues and offer guidance to on how to improve driver health and safety.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Recent Jury Verdicts &
Settlements

$6.4 Million Settlement Medical Malpractice

More Verdicts & Settlements
  • National board of trial academy
  • ABPLA | American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys
  • AV preeminent | Peer rated for highest level of professional excellence 2018
  • The best lawyer in America
  • Super Lawyers
  • America's top 100 high stakes litigators
  • The national trial lawyers top 100 trial lawyers
  • Avvo Rating 10.0 Superb Top rated personal injury
  • American association for justice president's club
  • American association for justice Leaders forum
  • ACBCA American College of Board Certified Attorneys
  • B Injury Board
  • Recommended by peers for leading lawyers network the top lawyers

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ fall into two categories — legal ability and general ethical standards.

**Board certification is not required to practice law in Illinois, and the Illinois Supreme Court does not recognize specialties in the practice of law.

What Our Clients Say

  • Just wanted to take a moment to say thank you. I know a lot of hard work, by all of you, went into the preparation of this case and we wanted you to know that it is greatly appreciated. We worried about many things during that period, but one thing we didn't worry about was our attorneys. What a fine team you make! You guys are great! Read More
  • I wanted to touch base with everyone again to express my thanks to everyone involved in the USAir 1016 case for the way the case was handled and the way you treated myself and my family. While I realize that there are other law firms that could have tried the case, I don't believe they could have matched the caring you showed us... Read More
  • How do we thank you for doing such a tremendous job with the lawsuit against Freeport Memorial Hospital?...The day that check arrived I was so nervous, in fact I was a wreck until we had it safely invested. I am not thanking you just as our attorney, but as a very good friend...Read More
  • We would like to take this opportunity to express our heartfelt thanks for the supportive service that you have given our family during the past three years. While we wish that we would not have found ourselves in a situation requiring your services, we are grateful for the sensitive way...Read More
Email Us For a Response

Have Questions? We Have Answers.

Tell us about your case and we’ll get back to you with a FREE case evaluation.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Premier Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Attorneys

Call 877-216-4213 or Email Us For A Free Initial Consultation

 Rapoport Law Offices, P.C

Office Location

20 North Clark Street
Suite 3500
Chicago, IL 60602

Toll Free: 877-216-4213
Phone: 312-445-9160
Chicago Law Office Map

Contact Information

Map