As the long weekend in many states winds down the good people at National Transport Insurance (NTI) have reminded drivers in states enjoying the extra holiday not to drive tired, with data showing more than 40 per cent of all fatigue-related fatal crashes involving a truck occur between midnight and 6am. 

NTI is Australia’s largest transport and logistics insurer and its 2019 NTARC Major Accident Investigation Report, it found fatigue crashes on a weekend are double the weekly average and the risk to truck drivers overnight is triple that of the daily average. 

NTI also found 83 per cent of all fatal multi-vehicle crashes involving a truck were the fault of the car driver. 

Report author Adam Gibson said it was important all road users felt safe sharing the road, particularly with many families expected to drive late into the night on long weekends and holidays.

“We know there will be a high volume of vehicles on Queensland roads over the next couple of days as a result of the long weekend,” Mr Gibson said. 

“Cars heading to their holiday destinations will be sharing the roads with truck drivers continuing their transport runs. 

“For those unfamiliar with driving alongside trucks, it’s important to remember to give them space, be aware of their blind spots, and leave adequate room for them to turn or make lane changes.” 

Mr Gibson said the report was not about putting blame on any road user. 

“We all have the right to get to our destination safely. All drivers, whether it’s those in a hatchback, through to those behind the wheel of a B-Double, need to be taking a break every two to three hours,” Mr Gibson said. 

“If you are stopping at rest bays, please ensure you’re leaving access for bigger vehicles and not blocking the way. 

“Remember: caffeine won’t keep you awake, neither will an open window or loud music. The only way to fight fatigue is with sleep.” 

The full report can be viewed here.