Is it safe to drive on 3.5 hours sleep?

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A Finnish lorry driver in Norway was handed fines of more than €1500 in addition to a driving ban and not without reason! In addition to the driver not having enough sleep, he hadn’t been using a tachograph card so he was being fraudulent of the driving times. During the day the heavy vehicle driver had driven a staggering 17 hours and 24 minutes.

Are your drivers being worked too hard? Are customers requiring too much from transport companies? The majority of us will not step into the drivers seat of a car if we are tired, as we are aware that our attention and response times are different compared to when we are not tired. Imagine the damage it could cause in a HGV if the driver did not break quick enough, for example.

In the UK, the main EU rules on driving hours are that you must not drive more than:
    • 9 hours in a day, this can be extended to 10 hours twice a week
    • 56 hours in a week
    • 90 hours in any 2 consecutive weeks
These must all be recorded on a tachograph.In terms of breaks, a driver must take:
    • At least 11 hours rest every day - this can be reduced to 9 hours rest 3 times between any 2 weekly rest periods
    • An unbroken rest period of 45 hours every week
    • A break/breaks totalling at least 45 minutes after no more than 4 hours 30 minutes driving
    • Weekly rest after 6 consecutive 24-hour periods of working, starting from the end of the last weekly rest period taken
ABAX Fleet Management - The ABAX FMS system has a variety of functions that can help the safety of your drivers. The system can notify your driver when they need to take a break from the wheel. The system can also remotely download tachograph files.

Source: Tungt.no article published on 07.04.2016