Skip to main content

Road Traffic Accidents

Volume 406: debated on Wednesday 4 June 2003

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps he is taking to prevent sleep-related driving accidents. [116024]

We are concerned about sleep-related road accidents and have an extensive programme of publicity and research aimed at reducing these.Campaigns to warn drivers of the dangers of falling asleep at the wheel have run since August 2000 and have included leaflets, posters, TV and radio advertising. Most recently, radio adverts were run over Easter and the May bank holidays advising drivers to take a break. These were reinforced by some 190 truck backs, delivering to Moto, Sainsburys, Asda and others, carrying the 'Don't Drive Tired' message over the April to June period this year. We have also recently produced a new public information film, for use by TV stations, to remind drivers to take proper breaks during long journeys.Advice on how to avoid and combat driver tiredness is in The Highway Code and on the DfT's road safety website at: Department has also undertaken considerable research to study driver sleepiness. The University of Loughborough Sleep Research Laboratory has carried out a series of road audits into sleep-related vehicle accidents on sections of selected trunk roads and motorways in the UK. The results were published in February 2001 in Road Safety Research Reports No. 21 and 22, available on-line at: roadsafety/index.htm A report on six more audits is due to be published in the summer. A project to study the effectiveness of motorway service areas in reducing fatigue-related accidents is also under way.