Did you know that a study found that 13% of commercial motor vehicle drivers were found to be fatigued at the time they were involved in an accident? As such, it’s essential that truck drivers know what driver fatigue is, what the warning signs of driver fatigue are and what they can do to combat it.
What is Driver Fatigue?
Driver fatigue refers to drivers losing some of their abilities due to inadequate sleep and a feeling a of drowsiness and weariness. There are a litany of variables that can cause driver fatigue, including but not limited to a lack of sleep, feeling physically tired, working too many hours or driving for too long.
The Warning Signs of Driver Fatigue
There are many forewarning signs that could suggest you’re suffering from driver fatigue, including the following:
- Heavy Eyes
- A reduction in cognitive abilities
- Slower reactions
- Persistent Yawns
- Nodding off
- A lack of focus
- Subconsciously speeding or slowing down
- A Lack of patience
- Lazy turns and shift gears
- Memory Loss (Such as when you can’t remember hte last few miles you drove)
How to Fight Against Driver Fatigue
So what can you do to combat driver fatigue? For starters, healthy habits are your best bet to avoiding it. This means staying on a strict sleeping schedule, getting plenty of rest, exercising, eating healthily and taking regularly scheduled breaks. What’s more, you should eschew alcoholic beverages the night before, and speak to your fleet managers about what tweaks can be made to your schedule to put you in the best position to avoid driver fatigue. Driver fatigue is a serious issue, and the more truck drivers are educated about it, the better it is for everyone.