How do you manage driver fatigue?

How often do you hear that a road traffic accident is the result of a driver falling asleep at the wheel of their car? The answer… too many. In many cases, this can be attributed to driver fatigue. 

Driver fatigue is potentially life-threatening therefore it is hugely important to be aware of the consequences of driving whilst tired and ensuring that the correct procedures are in place to minimise the impact and effects of fatigue upon workers who travel. 

To minimise the risk of fatigue-related accidents whilst driving consider the following before allowing your workforce to drive after a long shift: 

  1. Are they fit to drive? Assess whether they have worked a longer than normal shift or had an abnormal workload imposed upon them during their shift which may have made the worker more tired?
  2. How long is their journey? Determine how far the worker has to travel to reach their destination and how long this will take. Is the distance and time to get their suitable based on their fatigue levels? 
  3. Have breaks been planned? Ensure that workers have identified clear break stops along their route, if the route is particularly long. It is recommended to make break compulsory for workers that travel long distances regularly.
  4. Do you encourage stops? Encourage workers to stop if they feel tired whilst on the road, providing it is safe to do so. Stopping for a short period may make all the difference to their and others safety.
  5. Have you prepared your workforce? Introduce measures in the workplace that ensure workers stay alert such as allowing short 15-minute naps before travel, access to caffeine and water and avoid increasing shift length.

Considering the above measures as an employer, alongside a drivers own judgement on whether they are fit to drive will help ensure your workforce remain safe and alert whilst driving before, during and after a shift. 

Our fatigue risk management solution can assist you with managing worker fatigue, to find out how visit our Fatigue360 page.