Craig barton - senior media relations officer : tel

News Release

Craig Barton - Senior Media O

fficer : Tel. W 01908 252009; M 07931644675
Tony Bacon - Communications Officer: Tel. W 01908 254558
Stay alert to the holiday travel dangers of driver

Road safety officers at Milton Keynes Council are hosting a Driver Fatigue Awareness Day to
remind motorists of the danger of tiredness while driving during the holiday season.
These trips to holiday locations and to summer events such as the V music festival may involve a
long distance journey, which could take longer than normal due to the amount of traffic on the
So to highlight the dangers of driving when tired the Road Safety Team is hosting a ‘Driver
Fatigue Awareness Day’ at the Welcome Break Services at Newport Pagnell on the M1, on
Friday 20th August.
The event is being fully supported by Welcome Break Services.
Vince Morley, Milton Keynes Council’s road safety officer said: ”Driver fatigue can be a real
danger on these journeys; falling asleep at the wheel can obviously be fatal.
“Sleep does not occur without warning; drivers who start to feel drowsy may try to fight it off by
opening a window or turning up the radio. This doesn’t work! “
Welcome Break site director Mike Ashton said ‘This is a great idea which highlights a potentially
serious problem. It also highlights that the services at Newport Pagnell have been providing
refreshment for all drivers for 50 years – we opened to the general public in August 1960. Last
year we served over 1,000,000 cups of coffee – that’s enough to fill an Olympic sized swimming
pool 120 times over!’
In addition to the Council’s road safety team, Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service will be
attending with their display vehicle and a fire engine, and the Roads Policing department of
Thames Valley Police will be there with their display vehicle.
Cabinet member for Transport, Vanessa McPake said, ‘Drivers setting off on a trip this weekend
should ensure that they try to plan a break during the journey. Even if the trip appears to be over
a short distance, there may be hold-ups along the way and drivers should take a break and
refresh themselves, or better still swap drivers halfway through the journey to help stay alert.”
Check out the following tips and have a safer, more enjoyable trip:
• Plan your journey to include a 15-minute break every two hours • PR 122
For release: 16/08/2010
• Find a safe place to stop if you feel drowsy - not the hard shoulder
• Drink two cups of coffee or a high-caffeine drink, then take a short nap to allow the • Have a good night's sleep before setting out on a long journey. • Don't start a long trip if you're already tired. • Remember the risks if you have to get up unusually early • Try to avoid long trips between midnight and 6am and 2-4pm when natural alertness is The following advice will also help you to have a safer journey; • Carry out a POWER check on your car before you set off – Petrol, Oil, Water, Electrics,
Rubber (tyres/windscreen wipers).
• A car loaded with the family, luggage and fuel will be heavier than normal. Tyre pressures should be increased as recommended in the handbook. • Drivers will need to take into account the different handling characteristics of their car due to the extra weight. Brake earlier as the car will take longer to stop. If a roof box/rack is used the centre of gravity will rise making the car more ‘top heavy’, so steering will need to be more gentle. If most weight is in the boot, the front of the car will rise and the steering will feel ‘light’. For more information/ad or contact the Road Safety Unit on 01908-254601


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