4 ways to manage driver fatigue this summer

The holiday season is a busy time for all businesses, even more so for those who spend significant time on the roads.

Driver fatigue can be a particularly big issue at this time of year. With numerous deliveries to complete on time, in addition to the warmer weather, drivers can get tired on the roads far more easily.

As a fleet manager, it's important to keep the safety of your staff in mind at all times. Here are some quick points to share with your drivers to ensure they stay safe on the roads this Christmas.

1. Remember to take breaks

No matter how strict your delivery schedules are, you must pull over and take a break if you are feeling the effects of fatigue. The cost of a human life is far greater than that of a missed delivery target.

Having a short stop every few hours can work wonders in refreshing your brain and revitalising you for the remainder of the journey.

2. Watch what you drink and eat

Food and drink can have a significant effect on our cognitive function and ability to keep safe on the road.

It goes without saying that you shouldn't be anywhere near alcohol either before or during a long trip - try caffeine instead. Foods that are high in fat and grease can also make you feel drowsy, so try to resist the fare on offer at the diners on the side of the road.

3. Time your trips well

Try and time your trips so that they are neither too early in the morning nor too late at night. Statistics show that 2 am to 6 am is a particularly dangerous time to be driving.

The risk of crashing increases during the afternoon as well, usually after drivers have had a heavy lunch.

4. Use fleet management software

Fleet software can play a role in helping to eliminate driver fatigue in the first place.

Real-time reporting can give you up-to-date information on vehicle usage and how long a driver has been on the road, alerting you to areas of concern.