Phenomenon of fatigue among professional drivers in Poland
More details
Hide details
University of Life Sciences, Lublin, Poland
Institute of Rural Health, Lublin, Poland
Anna Pecyna   

University of Life Sciences in Lublin, Poland
Given the specificity of the occupation of professional drivers, fatigue is a very serious problem. Tired drivers can pose a huge threat to themselves and to other users of public roads. The effects of fatigue can lead to loss of drivers’ and other users’ health or life.

The aim of the study was to analyze some aspects of fatigue in Polish professional drivers (e.g. symptoms of fatigue reported by drivers, their frequency and number, critical hours, and fatigue management) in relation to such variables as the job seniority, the mode of transport, and the covered distance.

Material and methods:
The study involved 398 professional drivers. The method of research based on an anonymous electronic survey.

The survey showed that 89% of the respondents declared that they suffered from fatigue at work. The most common symptoms of fatigue reported by the drivers included drowsiness (76% of the respondents), eye strain (67%), lack of concentration (45%), and lack of energy (44%). The mean number of fatigue symptoms indicated by drivers involved in different modes of transport and covering different distances did not differ significantly.

The analysis revealed that the everyday experience of fatigue reported by the surveyed drivers depends on job seniority. There is a significant difference in the occurrence of critical hours experienced by drivers covering different distances.

Tang C, Liu C, Fang P,Xiang Y, Min R. Work-Related Accumulated Fatigue among Doctors in Tertiary Hospitals: A Cross-Sectional Survey in Six Provinces of China. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019; 16(17): 3049.
Han K, Trinkoff AM, Geiger-Brown J. Factors Associated with Work-Related Fatigue and Recovery in Hospital Nurses Working 12-Hour Shifts. Workplace Health & Safety. 2014; 62(10): 409–414.
Singal R. Variations of Mental Fatigue on Inspectors in Automobile Industry During Evening Shift – A Case study of Maruti Suzuki India Limited, Gurgaon. Int J Latest Trends Engineering Technol (IJLTET). 2015; 5(4): 429–435.
Aryal A, Ghahramani A, Becerik-Gerber B. Monitoring fatigue in construction workers using physiological measurements. Automat Constr. 2017; 82: 154–165.
Levenson A. Workplace fatigue is a systems problem. Cons Psychol J Pract Res. 2017; 69(2): 130–142.
Hystad SW, Saus ER, Sætrevik B, Eid J. Fatigue in seafarers working in the offshore oil and gas re-supply industry: effects of safety climate, psychosocial work environment and shift arrangement. Int Marit Health. 2013; 64(2): 72–79.
Filon F, Drusian A, Ronchese F, Negro C. Video Display Operator Complaints: A 10-Year Follow-Up of Visual Fatigue and Refractive Disorders. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019; 16 (14): 2501.
PN-EN ISO 10075-1:2018-01. Standard: Ergonomic rules regarding mental work load – Part 1: General issues and concepts, terms and definitions.
Bąk J, Bąk-Gajda D. Selected psychological factors affecting the driver’s reaction time. Scientific Papers of the Institute of Vehicle 2013; 5(96): 21–29. (in Polish).
Makowiec-Dąbrowska T, Bartkiewicz A, Siedlecka J, Gadzicka E. The effect of fatigue on the ability to drive vehicles. Med Pr. 2011; 62(3): 281–290. (in Polish).
Wiszniewski R, Gorgone Ch. Characteristics of medical procedures performed by firefighters. Crit Care Innov. 2019; 2(4): 17–24.
Leszczyński P, Panczyk M, Podgórski M, Owczarek K, Gałązkowski R, Mikos M, Charuta A, Zacharuk T, Gotlib J. Determinants of occupational burnout among employees of the Emergency Medical Services in Poland. Ann Agr Env Med. 2019; 26(1): 114–119.
Sasin P, Cieślak W. Safety of drivers in road transport – occupational risk. In: Education for safety. Ed. Wysocka EK. Publisher University of Safety in Poznań, Polska, 2014; 111–114. (in Polish).
Lasota AM, Hankiewicz K. Fatigue of truck drivers in courier companies. Logistics 2015; 4: 4422–4428. (in Polish).
Lasota A, Hankiewicz K. Fatigue of van drivers in courier companies. Logistics 2015; 3: 5704–5708. (in Polish).
Gonçalves M, Amici R, Lucas R, Åkerstedt T, Cirignotta F, Horne J, Léger D, McNicholas WT, Partinen M, Téran-Santos J, Peigneux P, Grote L, & National Representatives as Study Collaborators. Sleepiness at the wheel across Europe: A survey of 19 countries. J Sleep Res. 2015; 24(3): 242–253.
Meng F, Li S, Cao L, Li M, Peng Q, Wang C, Zhang W. Driving Fatigue in Professional Drivers: A Survey of Truck and Taxi Drivers. Traffic Injury Prevention. 2015; 16(5): 474–483.
Larue GS, Rakotonirainy A, Pettitt AN. Driving performance impairments due to hypovigilance on monotonous roads. Accid Anal Prev. 2011; 43(6): 2037–2046.
Jackson ML, Croft RJ, Kennedy GA, Owens K, Howard ME. Cognitive components of simulated driving performance: sleep loss effects and predictors. Accid Anal Prev. 2013; 50: 438–44.
Makowiec-Dąbrowska T, Gadzicka E, Siedlecka J, Szyjkowska A, Viebig P, Kozak P, Bortkiewicz A. Climate conditions and work-related fatigue among professional drivers. Int J Biometeorol. 2019; 63: 121–128.
Wang L, Pei Y. The Impact of continuous driving time and ret time on commercial drivers’ driving performance and recovery. J Safety Res. 2014; 50: 11–15.
Phillips RO, Sagberg F. Road accidents caused by sleepy drivers: Update of a Norwegian survey. Accid Anal Prev. 2013; 50: 138–146.
Santos JA, Lu JL. Occupational safety conditions of bus drivers in Metro Manila, the Philippines. Int J Occup Saf Ergon. 2016; 22(4): 508–513.
Rosso GL1, Perotto M, Feola M, Caramella M. Falling asleep at the wheel among Italian professional drivers (PDs): results from the HiRis PD study. Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 2014; 27(6): 1005–12.
Gembalska-Kwiecień A. States of man affecting his reliability. Assistance systems in production engineering. Engineering of Technical Systems. 2016; 2(4): 131–136.
Dorn L. af Wåhlberg AE. Behavioral culpability for traffic accidents. Transport Res F – Traf. 2019; 60: 505–514.
Directive 2002/15/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 2002 on the organisation of the working time of persons performing mobile road transport activities.
Regulation (EC) No 561/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 March 2006 on the harmonisation of certain social legislation relating to road transport and amending Council Regulations (EEC) No 3821/85 and (EC) No 2135/98 and repealing Council Regulation (EEC) No 3820/85 (Text with EEA relevance) – Declaration.
Council Regulation (EEC) No 3821/85 of 20 December 1985 on recording equipment in road transport.
Directive 2006/22/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 March 2006 on minimum conditions for the implementation of Council Regulations (EEC) No 3820/85 and (EEC) No 3821/85 concerning social legislation relating to road transport activities and repealing Council Directive 88/599/EEC (Text with EEA relevance) – Declarations.
Jamroz K, Smolarek L. Driver Fatigue and Road Safety on Poland’s National Roads. Int J of Occup Saf Ergo. 2013; 19(2): 297–309.
Williamson A, Lombardi DA, Folkard S, Stutts J, Courtney TK, Connor JL. The link between fatigue and safety. Accid Anal Prev. 2011; 43(2): 498–515.
Chen T, Sze NN, Bai L. Safety of professional drivers in an ageing society – A driving simulator study. Transport Res F-Traf. 2019; 67: 101–112.
Hanowski RJ, Hickman J, Fumero MC, Olson RL, Dingus TA. The sleep of commercial vehicle drivers under the 2003 hours-of-service regulations. Accident Anal Prev. 2007; 39: 1140–1145.
Kupiec A, Kupiec J. Przyczyny, skutki i metody zapobiegania zmęczeniu kierowcy. Autobusy 2017; 12: 264–270. (in Polish).
Gershon P, Shinar D, Oron-Gilad T, Parmet Y, Ronen A. Usage and perceived effectiveness of fatigue countermeasures for professional and nonprofessional drivers. Accid Anal Prev. 2011; 43: 797–803.
Friswell R, Williamson A. Comparison of the fatigue experiences of short haul light and long distance heavy vehicle drivers. Safety Science. 2013; 57: 203–213.
Ünal AB, de Waard D, Epstude K, Steg L. Driving with music: Effects on arousal and performance. Transport Res F-Traf. 2013; 21: 52–65.
Hayahsi M, Abe A. Short daytime naps in a car seat to counteract daytime sleepiness: The effect of backrest angl. Sleep Biol Rhythms. 2008; 6: 34–41.
Sharwood LN, Elkington J, Meuleners L, Ivers R, Boufous S, Stevenson M. Use of caffeinated substances and risk of crashes in long distance drivers of commercial vehicles: case-control study. BMJ. 2013; 346: f1140.
Makowiec-Dąbrowska T, Siedlecka J, Gadzicka E, Szyjkowska A, Dania M, Viebig P, Kosobudzki M, Bortkiewicz A. Zmęczenie pracą u kierowców autobusów miejskich. Med Pr. 2015; 66(5): 661–677. (in Polish).
Fouzi MSM, Othoman MA, Sulaiman SA. Effect of Recirculation on Air Quality in a Car Compartment. Aust J Basic & Appl Sci. 2014; 8(4): 466–470.
Ucińska M, Odachowska E, Gąsiorek K. Znaczenie temperamentu w analizie zmęczenia i jego skutków na przykładzie kierowców taxi. Autobusy 2016; 12: 482–488. (in Polish).
Cardoso M, Fulton F, Callaghan JP, Johnson M, Albert WJ. A pre/post evaluation of fatigue, stress and vigilance amongst commercially licensed truck drivers performing a prolonged driving task. Int J Occup Saf Ergo. 2019; 25(3): 344–354.
Blower D. Assessment of the effectiveness of advanced collision avoidance technologies. The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute; Ann Arbor, Michigan, 2014.