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Fatigue in HGV drivers is a serious and dangerous issue that should be avoided at all costs. It is estimated that roughly 20% of HGV accidents are due to drivers being overtired and making mistakes behind the wheel. The LGV industry is now regulated with drivers being restricted to no more than 45 hours of driving per week, however the issue of fatigue still persists and we believe this mainly affects drivers who work overnight shifts.

hgv driver fatigue

Here are our 4 top tips on how to stay perked up during your drive and reduce your chances of being drowsy behind the wheel.

Get enough sleep!

We all know that you feel terrible the next day after a bad night’s sleep, but did you know that if it happens regularly, you start accumulating sleep debt. Over a period it decreases your ability to make decisions and although you may not realise it, it starts to take a toll on your mental health. Every person needs a different amount of sleep so we recommend that you listen to your body and sleep the amount that is appropriate for you. A good way to find out how much sleep you need is to check the time before you bed down, and check the time when you wake up naturally, without setting the alarm. This is best done over a weekend and will give you an indication of how much sleep you need.

 

Stay hydrated!

Have you ever found that even with a decent amount of sleep you start feeling tired throughout the day? – This could be because you’re not drinking enough water. If you are severely dehydrated you could start feeling drowsy and dizzy and that’s the last thing you want to experience behind the wheel. To avoid this we recommend that you always keep bottles of water in the cabin and sip water periodically throughout the day.

 

Exercise often

This may sound counterproductive as exercising makes you tired. However, it has been proven that exercising often will boost your energy levels overall and improve your blood circulation. Exercising is also a healthy way to relieve stress which can contribute to feeling fatigue.

 

Eat less but more often

Have you ever eaten a really large meal and feel like its taken the life out of you? – That’s because when you eat a large amount of food in one sitting, your body uses most of your energy to begin processing the food. This can make you feel incredibly tired and in some cases unable/unwilling to move. The trick here is to eat small portions of food throughout the day so that your body doesn’t need all of your energy to process. By eating smaller portions of food but eating more often, you will increase your metabolism which helps control your weight and you will also be able to reap more of the nutrients in the food itself.

 

If you follow the advice above, you will notice that you will start feeling less tired in your daily routine and also find a whole load of other benefits to your health as well. More importantly,  it will reduce your chance of being involved in a collision due to fatigue on the road. For more information on how to reduce your chances of being involved in an accident, please our blog on accident prevention.

 

As a training company, we take safety very seriously and run training courses designed to improve your safety on the road. For more information please call us on  08000315765

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