AA finds one in eight drivers have fallen asleep at the wheel
02 November 2018
The AA is urging fleet managers to safeguard drivers after research revealed that one in eight (13%) of motorists has admitted to falling asleep behind the wheel, with drowsy driving responsible for a quarter of fatal crashes.
The research, which was commissioned by the AA Charitable Trust, forms part of a wider campaign aimed at tackling the dangers of driving while tired. Among its findings are the startling revelation that men are three times more likely to fall asleep at the wheel than women, while nearly two fifths of drivers say they have been so tired when driving that dropping off has been a real cause for concern.
"The dangers of driving while tired are well known, but these figures prove there are too many incidents of drivers over estimating their ability to drive while fatigued," said Jennie Hill, AA director of business services. "Fleet drivers are especially at risk, in part due to business pressures requiring staff to cover as many miles, or complete as many jobs, as possible during a working day.
"Allowing your team to drive when tired can prove a fatal business decision. Firms have a legal obligation to ensure company car drivers are as safe as possible while driving. Organisations can be prosecuted for corporate manslaughter if an employee is involved in a fatal crash while driving their vehicle for work. Safety on the road must always be prioritised over profit."
Don't assume that rolling down the window or turning up the radio will cut it in terms of fatigue reduction either, Hill warns. "You can't fight sleep, so if you feel yourself nodding off, you must pull into a safe spot, have a couple of cups of coffee and a 15-minute nap before continuing your journey."
For more information and to see some sleep tips for drivers, visit https://www.theaa.com/driving-advice/safety/tired-drivers. You can also watch the new campaign video here: https://youtu.be/KwR_rwzNJ38.