Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Fatigue Can Be a Driving Killer

Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

Fatigue Can Be a Driving Killer

Article excerpt

FATIGUE is one of the biggest causes of crashes for heavy vehicle drivers in Australia.

It is a severe health and safety risk for more than 30,000 truck drivers in NSW alone.

It doesn't just make you feel tired when you are behind the wheel; it slows your reaction time, limits your awareness and reduces your focus on concentration, resulting in a potentially fatal micro sleep.

It is essential for all drivers to take frequent rest breaks when travelling to reduce the risk of being involved in a crash.

Remember, one less fatigued driver on the road makes travelling safer for other motorists.

To improve road safety for heavy vehicle drivers and their fellow motorists, the world-first New National Model Legislation for Heavy Vehicle Driver Fatigue Reform was developed by the National Transport Commission (NTC) and implemented in 2008.

The reform promotes and provides safe management of fatigue of regulated heavy vehicle drivers while they are on a road and applies to trucks and truck/trailer combinations over 12 tonne GVM and buses built to seat more than 12 adults.

By law, all drivers who work outside a 100km radius of their base must record their work hours and rest time in a national work diary or log book.

Operators, employers and self-employed drivers must also keep records of driver work and rest time, including copies of work diary pages, records of work and rest time, which is not recorded in a work diary, and records of driver rosters and payments to drivers.

But while the law is implemented to assist in the protection of all drivers on Australian roads, there are some easy steps motorists and heavy vehicle drivers can take to reduce the effects of fatigue on the road.


Be aware of the side-effects caused by some medications. If you are prescribed medication, consult with your doctor and take steps to prevent drowsiness setting in if you are required to spend long hours on the road. …

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