Why does a sleepy driver continue to drive?

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Joel Johansson
Arne Jönsson

In the traffic domain it is commonly known that sleepiness is a highly contributing factor in traffic accidents. Research has shown that sleepiness among drivers is present in about 16-–23 per cent of all car accidents. In the aviation and railway industry a method or framework with some shared influences from the Human Factors approach, called Fatigue Risk Management (FRM) has been used to investigate how social and organisational factors affect the personnel’s level of sleepiness. The overall aims of this study are to investigate how truck drivers’ experience, fight and counteract sleepiness in their daily work environment. The results show that drivers face a wide variety of sleep contributing factors, stemming from both organisational factors and individual behaviour. Possible ways of counteracting truck driver sleepiness, concerning both the individual and the organisation, are also suggested.

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