Silhouette of a man standing in front of an 18-wheeler

Driving Trucks and Sleep Apnea

Due to rigorous schedules, truck accidents are on the road for hours in solitude, thus leading to fatigue. It’s a no-brainer that fatigued driving is dangerous, especially while driving an 18-wheeler. In fact, about 13% of large truck collisions are related to driver fatigue, and one of the biggest causes of fatigue is sleep apnea.

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder that affects how a person breathes at night due to an obstructed upper airway. Because the breathing stops and starts repeatedly, it’s almost impossible for those with sleep apnea to go into rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which leads to chronic fatigue.

Those who are at risk of developing sleep apnea are those who are:

  • Male
  • Older in age
  • Obese or have a high body mass index (BMI)
  • More likely to have a stagnant lifestyle

Can Truck Drivers Work With Sleep Apnea?

Understanding that the human body needs proper rest to function is crucial. When people are deprived of proper sleep, it can make it very dangerous to operate vehicles, especially big rigs. Those who have sleep apnea face the following damaging effects:

  • Decreased alertness
  • Difficulty with cognitive function
  • Inability to react on time

Truck drivers are not recommended to drive with sleep apnea as their condition can put many at risk if not properly treated. A sleep-deprived driver can miss signs, fail to maintain the correct speed, and even drift into other lanes. If you are someone with sleep apnea who is considering entering the trucking industry, it’s best to speak to your doctor first.

Ready to File a Claim?

Whether it was the driver’s fault for negligently getting on the road or the trucking company’s fault for violating the federal hours-of-service regulations, it’s crucial to hold the negligent parties responsible. Our team at Michles & Booth, P.A. can assist you with seeking compensation for any injuries you have sustained in your accident.

When you’re ready, call (800) 848-6168 or visit our website to get started on a consultation request form.


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