No matter how healthy you may be, pretty much every driver has struggled with fatigue at the wheel. Feeling tired, eyes becoming gritty and heavy...but, you still have a 200 mile leg left in your route. Perhaps, you wanted to pull over and rest 50 miles ago, but you just couldn’t do it for fear of delivering your load late or being reprimanded for a “service failure.” We hear you -- truck driver fatigue is a very real problem.
According to the 2007 Large Truck Crash Causation Study that analyzed data from 963 accidents involving a large truck and a passenger vehicle, it turns out that fatigue was the highest-ranking factor. Why are we not surprised. From this study, it was determined that fatigue is the largest identifiable -- and preventable -- cause of accidents in our fellow truckers; not alcohol or drugs like some may assume.
If you’re tired of feeling overly tired and want to reduce your fatigue, we recommend these four truck driver fatigue prevention tips:
1. Get Moving
Start an exercise routine that works with your schedule. The best time to work out is when you have time. 60 minutes, 30 minutes, or even just 15 minutes of additional activity 3 times per week is better than nothing.
2. Be Sure You’re Building Muscle
Adding in free weights or resistance training to your workout is a great way to lean out, build muscle, and better prepare your body for those long hauls. Start familiarizing yourself with the fitness centers and walking trails at many TA-Petro locations.
3. Burning Fat With A Well Rounded Routine
Cardio, interval training, resistance training -- it’s a lot to take in. Rather than get overwhelmed, head to the gym and ask the attendant for a quick, 30-minute workout that gets your heart rate up, your blood pumping, and your muscles working.
4. Eating Well
Making smart meal and snack choices can certainly go a long way in making you feel fuller for extended periods of time while fueling your body for the long day ahead. High fibre salads, sandwiches, and smoothies are always a great choice while on the road.