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New device uses shocks to keep drivers awake

New York motorists may not be aware that drowsy driving can be just as deadly as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that drowsy driving may be responsible for up to 6,000 fatal motor vehicle accidents on U.S. roads every year.

Many drivers depend on things like caffeine and blaring music to help them keep awake while behind the wheel. However, a company called Creative Mode has developed a product that it believes will work better. The device, known as Steer, is designed to be worn around a driver's wrist, where it monitors sweat levels and heart rate for signs of drowsiness. If Steer believes a driver is sleepy, it will deliver vibrations and shocks. The shocks are harmless, but they are supposed to help raise serotonin and cortisol levels in the driver's body, which could help people stay awake. The founder of the company came up with the idea after a friend fell asleep while driving and crashed into a tree, breaking his collarbone. Steer currently has almost 100 supporters on Kickstarter, and it will retail for approximately $230.

Victims of car accidents caused by drowsy drivers have the right to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver in court. With the help of an attorney, it may be possible to use police reports and witness testimony to prove that the drowsy driver is legally responsible for a victim's injuries. Typical damages sought in such a case often include medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and property loss.

Source: Digital Trends, "Shocking Device Will Keep Drivers Awake With An Electric Pulse", Dyllan Furness, July 24, 2017

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