February 2019

Safety Tip: February

 

Fatigue Can Be Fatal

 

Fatigue  may cause drowsiness that, at any moment, may turn into complete sleep. Fatigue may produce a mental state that will deceive drivers into believing that they are capable of driving safely. Fatigue hampers the driver’s ability to correctly judge distances, speed or driving conditions. These circumstances can lead to a serious accident. 

 

You should be aware of the signs of fatigue so you can take measures to counteract them. While you are still alert you usually sit relatively quiet in your seat, but as you begin to get tired, you may become restless, squirm in your seat, stretch, or rub your eyes and you may experience short lapses of attention. The lapse may be long enough  to lose control of your vehicle and to cause an accident. 

 

As drivers wear out, they pay less and less attention to the instrument panel and to the rear and side view mirrors. The tired driver will stare fixedly ahead, actually appearing to be in a trance. This is the point at which driving patterns change. There is less steering, irregular or erratic speed changes, weaving back and forth, and finally, crossing the centerline or drifting off the road entirely. This fatigued driver is a hazard to his or her own safety, as well as the safety of everyone else on the road. Some of the precautions the driver can take to combat fatigue are: 

 

Get adequate sleep before you drive. A driver should not operate a vehicle when tired, ill, or when any other condition makes his driving ability less than 100%. 
Do not just stare at the road ahead. Keep your eyes moving and watch the traffic all around you. Use your rear view mirrors often to check the traffic behind and beside you.
Read all the traffic signs.
Check the instrument panel frequently, especially to monitor your speed. 
Do not eat a heavy meal before you drive. 
Keep the cab temperature cool, with good circulation of fresh air. 
A drink of coffee or water may increase alertness.

 

Learn to recognize the signs of fatigue, follow safe driving practices and get the rest required to safely operate your motor vehicle. 

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