IN THE NEWS

Jun 06, 2017

 

The ATU 1624, a union representing over 300 members of Coach Canada and Megabus, is calling for the Canadian Government to step up on the prevention of fatigue-related fatalities.
 
The ATU said in a press release that roughly 41% of fatalities of motor coach collisions are a direct result of exhaustion, and fatigue is one of the leading causes of death on the roads.
 
They state that one of the leading contributors to road fatigue is the lack of proper sleep. The risk of fatigue also increases when driving at times when a person would normally be sleeping, such as during the early morning hours or late at night, they said.
 
Studies provided by ATU, said that a driver's performance begins to decline after being awake for 13 hours. However, they say the average coach driver spends up to 13 hours or more in a 24-hour period, with only eight consecutive hours of rest between shifts.
 
The ATU provided several suggestions to help improve the issue, including limiting daily driving times to a maximum of 10 hours, ensure that drivers are not on duty for more than 13 hours in a 24-hour period and guarantee a minimum of 10 consecutive hours’ rest between shifts.

In 2014, the ATU launched a similar campaign to draw awareness to the issue, by asking the government to make changes to the Motor Vehicle Transport Act that govern drivers’ hours of service. However, the government did not act and left the legislation unchanged.
 
The ATU hopes to succeed this time, saying that “the lives of all passengers and motor coach drivers matter.”

– Sean Cann-Sheppard

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