Examining signs of driver sleepiness, usage of sleepiness countermeasures and the associations with sleepy driving behaviours and individual factors
2015 (English)In: Accident Analysis and Prevention, ISSN 0001-4575, E-ISSN 1879-2057, Vol. 85, 22-29 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The impairing effect from sleepiness is a major contributor to road crashes. The ability of a sleepy driver to perceive their level of sleepiness is an important consideration for road safety as well as the type of sleepiness countermeasure used by drivers as some sleepiness countermeasures are more effective than others. The aims of the current study were to determine the extent that the signs of driver sleepiness were associated with sleepy driving behaviours, as well as determining which individual factors (demographic, work, driving, and sleep-related factors) were associated with using a roadside or in-vehicle sleepiness countermeasure. A sample of 1518 Australian drivers from the Australian State of New South Wales and the neighbouring Australian Capital Territory took part in the study. The participants' experiences with the signs of sleepiness were reasonably extensive. A number of the early signs of sleepiness (e.g., yawning, frequent eye blinks) were related with continuing to drive while sleepy, with the more advanced signs of sleepiness (e.g., difficulty keeping eyes open, dreamlike state of consciousness) associated with having a sleep-related close call. The individual factors associated with using a roadside sleepiness countermeasure included age (being older), education (tertiary level), difficulties getting to sleep, not continuing to drive while sleepy, and having experienced many signs of sleepiness. The results suggest that these participants have a reasonable awareness and experience with the signs of driver sleepiness. Factors related to previous experiences with sleepiness were associated with implementing a roadside countermeasure. Nonetheless, the high proportions of drivers performing sleepy driving behaviours suggest that concerted efforts are needed with road safety campaigns regarding the dangers of driving while sleepy.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 85, 22-29 p.
Driver fatigue, Sleepiness, Drowsiness, Countermeasures, Epworth Sleepiness Scale
Medical and Health Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-122349DOI: 10.1016/j.aap.2015.08.022ISI: 000364884800003PubMedID: 26364140Local ID: P-3287OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-122349DiVA: diva2:871945