Assistant Editor, Safety & Health Practitioner

January 31, 2020

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Road safety

Road safety company warns drivers about being fatigue

GEM Motoring Assist, a road safety and breakdown recovery organisation, has warned fleets and their drivers to pay more attention to the risk of fatigue and tiredness while driving.

It says that it is more dangerous among those who drive as their job, because they are likely to be at the wheel for long periods, or with tight deadlines to meet in the course of a day.

Collisions are more likely to happen when a driver fails to respond quickly in the event of a dangerous situation. Research has revealed that 85% of drivers involved in fatigue-related accidents are male, and more than one third are aged under 30 years, including shift workers, truck drivers and company car drivers.

The road safety company has created a list of tips for drivers, in order to improve safety and reduce the risk of being in a fatigue-related collision, this includes:

GEM’s tips to reduce the risk of being in a fatigue-related collision are:

  • Ensuring you get a good night’s sleep before heading off on a long trip.
  • Not driving for more than eight to ten house and share the driving if possible.
  • Taking regular breaks, a break of at least 15 minutes after every two hours or every 100 miles is recommended.
  • Don’t drink alcohol before your trip. Even a small amount can significantly contribute to driver fatigue.
  • avoid driving at times when you would usually be sleeping. Your body clock will not be used to it.
  • If you feel you are becoming drowsy, consider pulling over somewhere safe and legal to take a 15-minute powernap.

GEM road safety officer Neil Worth said: “Exhausted drivers pose a significant safety threat, to themselves, to their passengers and to others who share the same road space. Fatigue is a major contributory factor in around 20% of road crashes, particularly in the early hours of the morning. However, on long, monotonous stretches of motorway it’s likely that a much greater proportion of collisions will be fatigue-related.”

“These collisions are typically around 50% more likely to result in death or serious injury, as the driver is unable to take avoiding action to reduce severity of an impact,” said Worth.

“It may be the length of the journey you’re making that puts you at risk, but it could be your general state of alertness before you get behind the wheel.

“Crucially, when you’re driving, you will know when you’re starting to feel sleepy – it won’t just suddenly happen. So, don’t ignore the warnings your body is giving you. Make the decision to stop driving as soon as it’s safe and practical. Giving yourself a proper break could make the difference not just for your own safety, but for the safety of those around you”, Worth concluded.

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