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Take more breaks and stay awake

Take more breaks and stay awake

When it comes to the holiday break, who doesn’t love a little getaway? Whether it’s a long drive to a neighbouring state, a short trip to the coast, or a smooth cruise across town, it’s essential to plan ahead to keep your friends and family safe along your travels.

With more than 19.2 million registered motor vehicles across the country, there are millions of drivers behind the wheel at any given time. And if like many Aussies, you’re planning on packing your bags and hitting the road this Easter break, then you should plan ahead and be sure you’re well rested before putting your foot to the accelerator.

The latest Australian road safety statistics show there were 1,143 road deaths in 2018. This year, road deaths have increased by 15.6% and fatigue is one of the biggest causes of fatalities on our roads, causing between 20% to 30% of fatal road accidents around Australia, and are even higher in rural areas.

Drivers need to be aware of the increased risks associated with driving and how getting behind the wheel when tired can significantly increase the chance of an accident. Driving while fatigued can impair your ability to make decisions, slow down your reaction time, or worse, slip you into a micro-sleep.

Take more breaks

There are many ways drivers can reduce the chance of having a crash. Here are a few techniques to help you get to your final stop safely:

1.   Get your vehicle serviced before hitting the road

2.   Achieve a good night’s sleep

3.   Share the driving 

4.   Avoid being distracted

5.   Keep the kids busy

6.   Take a break every two hours

Sustain energy levels by staying hydrated and eating regularly

Anything to wake you up. Don’t drive tired

At NRMA, it’s our duty to help drivers stay safe behind the wheel. So to overcome tired eyes during long drives this Easter, we’ve scattered billboards designed to imitate road signs across NSW to help tackle driver fatigue.

The signboards are part of NRMA’s campaign to encourage drivers to stay awake and take more breaks by reminding them not to drive tired. The billboards display the number of kilometres to a main town and the number of kilometres to a comical destination, designed to jolt drivers into a state of alertness and bring attention to a driver’s current physical and mental state.

The key to staying safe on the road is to be prepared, know where you're going and plan regular driving breaks every two-hours, rather than just pulling over when you feel tired – that’s what Driver Reviver sites are for.

Operating in Oz for more than 28 years, there are 175 Driver Reviver sites across the country. Powered by volunteers, the areas provide drivers and their passengers a place to come to a halt, grab a hot beverage and free snacks, and most importantly, a chance to take more breaks.

To support NRMA’s mission to do anything to wake drivers up and prevent them from driving tired, look out for our entertaining roadside activities located at various NSW Driver Reviver sites this Easter.

Find Driver Reviver sites on your route

If you’re part of the 22% of motorists who drive more than 4-hours without stopping, a Driver Reviver site is the perfect place for you to recharge. Use the Driver Reviver interactive map to find the nearest rest area locations on your route:

NSW: Transport for NSW

VIC: SES Victoria

WA: Roadwise

QLD: Queensland Government

TAS: Explore Tasmania

SA & NT: Play and Go

And remember, it isn’t the destination that matters the most, it’s the journey. So remind yourself to do anything to keep awake during your travels and don’t drive tired this holiday break.

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