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Most everyone, whether in Ohio or elsewhere, knows that a lack of sleep can cause a multitude of problems. Some, like crankiness or a distracted attention span, are more annoying than they are dangerous. Others, like a recent accident apparently caused by truck driver fatigue, can lead to tragic results.

A 62-year-old man was killed in the collision between his car and a truck. The truck driver had reportedly fallen asleep while driving. He crossed the center line and ran into the car driven by the man who later died.

The truck driver says he is deeply sorry for what happened. He says he thinks about it every day and wishes he could have done things differently. As part of his sentence, he will speak to students at driving schools on the consequences of driving while excessively fatigued. He was also given three months in jail, with two of them suspended. His driver’s license has been revoked for the next two years.

The family of the man who died argued that the truck driver should spend the maximum amount of time allowed by law in jail. They said what happened was not an accident that could not be avoided. They claim, instead, that it was a foreseeable consequence when someone who needs sleep continues to drive anyway.

The decedent’s widow said that she was condemned to be alone without the person she loved most. She said a nap would have prevented that from happening, but instead, truck driver fatigue took the father of her children away. She and her children retain the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit in an Ohio civil court. A successfully litigated claim cannot make up for the loss of life but it may help replace lost income and provide the financial means to carry on.

Source: wfmj.com, “North Carolina man sentenced in fatal Interstate 80 accident“, Matt Stone, April 10, 2014