Commercial truck drivers are often under serious time constraints. As a result, they may push themselves to the limit to make deadlines, which can lead to driving while fatigued.
According to SleepFoundation.org, drowsy driving was the cause of at least 91,000 accidents in 2017. Because truckers spend so much time behind the wheel, they must make every attempt to avoid driving while fatigued. Here are a few things they can do.
Take breaks as needed
According to the law, truckers must take breaks after so many hours of driving. However, drowsiness can strike at any time, so drivers should stop whenever they feel overly tired or fatigued. Drooping eyelids, excessive yawning, and a groggy feeling all indicated that it is time for a break.
Develop healthy sleep habits
While it is definitely important to get sufficient sleep the night before heading out on a big trip, commercial drivers must have good sleep quality overall. Getting enough quality sleep for many days leading up to the excursion can boost energy and help truckers maintain alertness. This is much better than relying on quick fixes, like caffeine, which can cause damaging burnout once the initial effect wears off.
Avoid alcohol and medication
Driving under the influence of alcohol can have a deadly impact. It also worsens the effects of drowsiness by impairing a driver even further. Even some over-the-counter medication is problematic. Certain cold and flu medicines, as well as allergy medications, may cause tiredness. Truckers should read the labeling on medication before taking it on the road.
It is also important for drivers of passenger vehicles to avoid drowsy driving. Get enough sleep each night and always take rest breaks to ensure you are safe on the road.