The festive season is traditionally a busy period for the commercial passenger vehicle industry. More people out shopping, Christmas parties and end of year catchups all mean extra passenger journeys.
But longer shifts and more time on the road increases the risk of drivers becoming fatigued.
Safety regulator CPVV is urging drivers to look after themselves and their passengers during the festive season by managing fatigue and ensuring they stay well rested.
Fatigue is more than just feeling tired or drowsy, it is a continued feeling of being tired or not having any energy – a feeling of total exhaustion. CPV drivers can experience fatigue from long and consecutive shifts, little or no sleep, working at night and not enough recovery time between shifts.
Fatigue can be a deadly problem for long-term health as well as increasing the risk of accidents and injury.
Chris Banks, Director Safety Operations and Policy Commercial Passenger Vehicles Victoria, said drivers should be extra vigilant about fatigue at this time of year.
“The festive season is a busy time for drivers and booking providers,” he said. “Watch for signs of fatigue, make sure you take adequate rest breaks and look after yourself and your passengers.”
Some simple tips for managing fatigue:
- The only real way to treat fatigue is to sleep. The best sleep you can get is night sleep, so keep night shifts to a minimum.
- Don’t drive if you feel fatigued – if you notice that you may have ‘nodded off’, even for a second, stop driving/working straight away, take a nap or have a break and something to drink.
- Take plenty of rest breaks and drink water. Every two hours of driving without a break increases your risk of fatigue.
Fatigue management and the safety and wellbeing of drivers and members of the public are the responsibility of all industry participants. BSPs have a responsibility for monitoring their drivers.
More safety information for drivers and booking providers can be found on our website here: https://cpv.vic.gov.au/drivers/accredited-driver-responsibilities/industry-safety-toolbox#impairment