Brake issues driver fatigue warning as holiday season gets underway

12.00 | 24 July 2013 | | 3 comments

As the holiday season gets underway Brake is warning drivers of the dangers of falling asleep at the wheel on long journeys.

Brake and Direct Line have today (25 July) published a new survey of 1,000 drivers in which 55% of respondents admitted that they are ignoring basic advice to take rest breaks at least every two hours on long journeys. 9% of respondents also admitted to not stopping at all on long journeys unless they absolutely have to. And just 45% said that they make sure they get at least seven hours’ sleep the night before travelling.

Julie Townsend, deputy chief executive at Brake, said: “A large proportion of the driving public are scarily confident they can push on through on long drives without stopping.

“In reality, regular breaks – at least every two hours – are essential for staying alert and awake, as is getting plenty of sleep the night before. Sleepiness can catch you unawares at the wheel and it only takes a couple of seconds on a motorway to cause absolute carnage.

“The summer means long journeys for many families hoping to catch some sun at the coast or abroad. Brake is warning that to make sure you and your loved ones get there safely you need to allow plenty of time to take it easy, take regular rest breaks, and ensure you get a full night’s sleep beforehand."

Contact Siobhan MacMahon on 01484 550063 for more information.


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    Please please don’t ask for more rumble strips or those other warning stripes slowing traffic down before roundabouts etc. Every one of those has little effect upon the stability of four wheeled vehicles but are a teeth knocking danger to any twv, particularly if slowing and the suspension is under pressure from braking.

    Every time a front or rear wheel of a twv rides over them the shock rebound causes that wheel to lose a lot of contact with the road surface and that as everyone knows is a very dangerous situation.

    bob craven Lancs
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    I think this area is an area ripe for much more effort. Although the engineering consists of rumble strips and safety barriers, the education side needs a lot more work. I may be wrong but the main tactic is occasional use of VMS signs. In my view there needs to be more work with major employers and also at at ports/airports/hire car companies where tired drivers are more targetable.

    Pete, Liverpool
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    Its a shame this release does not appear to identify the common early indicators of fatigue that occur long before the sleep phase. The need for cool air, fidgeting, sound, stretching, eating and so on. These are the signs that drivers need to be aware of an then act on them.

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