GEM Motoring Assist has shared their views on the importance of avoiding driver fatigue, especially on long journeys. The timing has been organised to take into account that the summer holidays are on their way.Thousands of families will be travelling up and down the UK to their chosen destinations.
Tiredness when driving increases the risk of collision as it is much harder to focus on what is around you. Your reactions will be slower and if a risky or hazardous situation occurs, you will be much less likely to be able to react quickly. Research shows that driver fatigue may be a contributory factor in as many as 20% of all road traffic accidents and 25% of serious and fatal accidents.
Speaking on behalf of GEM Motoring Assist, chief executive David Williams MBE said: “A fatigue-related crash is around 50 per cent more likely to result in death or serious injury, simply because a driver who has fallen asleep at the wheel will be unable to reduce speed or change direction to avoid a collision. The consequences can be devastating.”
Staying Awake Behind the Wheel
Falling asleep in the wheel can be fatal so it is important to do all you can to avoid feeling tired before driving, especially for long trips. GEM put together a few simple tips to help drivers prepare for longer journeys. They include:
- Get a good night’s sleep before any long journeys
- Plan your journey in a way that allows you to build in time to reach your destination without any need to rush
- If you can avoid long distance driving, then do so. If you can share the driving or take turns with passengers, then do so
- Take a fifteen-minute break after every two hours or driving or 100 miles. Take the time to walk around and have a caffeinated drink if you want an extra boost
- Avoid driving at times you would usually be asleep
GEM have also put released this video on the dangers of fatigue:
There are many dangers on the roads that you can’t influence. With this in mind it should be your prerogative to ensure you are in the best state to drive at all times. Sometimes long distance driving can’t be avoided and sometimes it’s for the means of enjoying something at the end of it, but you need to remain alert, awake and focused every time you hit the road. The risks driver fatigue poses are not worth the potential consequences.