As we get into 2011 and the BASICS of CSA 2010, the importance of Fatigue Driving basics still seems to be an issue that many companies have, and will continue to have until proper training and measures are supplied and supported within trucking companies.
There are certain ways that the driver themselves can eliminate driver fatigue when operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV):
- When getting your dispatch take the time to plan your route and incorporate times for breaks which will minimize your driving allowing you to give yourself a brake and let the eyes relax.
- Wear sunglasses on sunny days, and if you wear prescription glasses make sure that your eyeglasses are current prescription and if possible shade when in the sun, or use a flip down lens, eliminating the stress on the eyes from the sun.
- Seeing is important as a commercial driver, so your glasses and sunshades are important, but so is your windshield or windows. Be sure that they are clean from any residue that may obstruct your view, even in the slightest.
- Did you realize the way you driver your unit can cause fatigue? When operating vehicles, operate it smoothly, cut down on rough shifting, making hard turns, and sudden braking.
- Excess sugars or energy drinks also pick you up for awhile and then leave you tired while coming down of what we call "the sugar rush"
- Get plenty of sleep
- Manage stress, because stress can cause fatigue
- Open windows to keep plenty of fresh air in the vehicle
These tips are important in helping with driver fatigue but there is a much broader range. Driver Fatigue in the concept of the DOT can result in a citation even if you have done all of the above, but you have not kept an accurate log, or if you are just coming back from time off and have in your position the last 7 days.
Be sure that your up to par on your procedures when it comes to driver fatigue and take the necessary procedure to protect both yourself and your company.
“Wheels on the Right Road” Safety and Compliance Tips, Resources & Forms