Why lorry drivers know the importance of sleep

lorriesWe’ve all been there before: you’re driving and find yourself surrounded by lorry’s, suddenly afraid of the potential accident. There’s something about their massive size that strikes us with fear, even though accidents with these vehicles are far less common than those with other, typical vehicles. Obviously, we all know that an accident with a lorry is far more likely to be deadly.

The news is full of headlines discussing the recent accident between a Wal-Mart employee and comedian Tracy Morgan. But accidents caused by a lack of sleep and long working hours for these drivers are far more common than we realize. Most of them never make it to the news, though, because they don’t involve high-profile individuals and corporations. Studies even show that frequent exercise can make a big difference in keeping drivers alert. This could be simple stretching or using a rowing machine in the gym for example.

The Lack of Sleep is the Biggest Problem

Lorry drivers are often forced to work long hours. They absolutely must maintain a schedule, regardless of the traffic or weather. Most of them are required to complete their runs in times that border on unrealistic even without these challenges. They’re compensated based on the number of miles they drive. The more time they spend on the road, and the faster they’re moving, the more money they can make.

An accident taking place just outside of England earlier this year resulted in several fatalities. The investigation found that the driver, who survived, was sleep deprived. He had been driving for nearly twenty hours straight, despite the laws governing the amount of time he was legally allowed to spend behind the wheel.

Getting Out of the Lorry and Into the Bed

Not only was the driver behind the wheel for far too long, but it was also normal for him to sleep in his truck after completing a haul. This is a common practice. Many lorries even include a compartment fitted with a bed to enable this practice. They’re often fitted with cheap mattresses that prevent the driver from getting a good night’s rest.

While you probably don’t have a job that involves the types of dangers that come with operating a vehicle that literally weighs tonnes, you’re probably facing similar difficulties when it comes to getting the rest you need. So, just what does it take to get the best night’s sleep possible?

First, you should have a good mattress. Many people sleep on the same mattress for far too long. If you find yourself tossing and turning at night, this is a sign that it’s time for a new mattress. A memory foam mattress will often provide the best comfort, giving you the rest you need for peak performance during the next day.

It’s also important that you plan for enough sleep. Many people simply watch television before going to bed. They then lie there for far too long before actually drifting off to sleep. It’s a good idea to avoid the screen at least an hour before bed, if not more.

By making sure that you develop good sleeping habits and have a good mattress, you’ll improve your chances of getting sleep that re energises you for the next day. Don’t be like lorry drivers who are often sleep deprived, even if your job doesn’t involve the same level of risk. You’ll be far more productive and happy.