What are these risks? The most troubling consequences of sleepiness are injuries and deaths related to lapses in attention and delayed response times at critical moments, such as while driving. Drowsiness or fatigue has been identified as a principle cause in at least 100,000 police-reported traffic crashes each year, killing more than 1,500 Americans and injuring another 71,000, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA, 1994). Young drivers age 25 or under are involved in more than one-half of fall-asleep crashes.
The National Sleep Foundation's (NSF) Sleep And Teens Task Force developed this report to summarize existing research about sleep-related issues affecting adolescents. We hope that this report will serve as a valuable and practical resource for parents, educators, community leaders, adolescents and others in their efforts to make informed decisions regarding health, safety and sleep-related issues within their communities.
A nonprofit, private organization, NSF is a leader in public education efforts regarding the risks associated with drowsy driving and other issues related to sleepiness and sleep loss. We welcome your comments about this report and your suggestions for expanding public awareness and supporting positive changes to protect the safety and well-being of our nation's youth.