Motorcycle taxi drivers and fatigue

New research from the College of Science, Health and Engineering highlights the dangers of fatigue for motorcycle taxi drivers

Motorcycle taxis are a common form of transport in South-East Asia. Cheap, fast and flexible, their popularity has been fueled by the advent of ride-hailing services.

“Like professional truck and car taxi drivers, motorcycle taxi drivers experience fatigue which can contribute to accidents,” says Dr Long Truong, a Lecturer in the Department of Engineering.

In new research published in Accident Analysis & Prevention, Truong and collaborators have identified that 16% of motorcycle taxi drivers in Hanoi, Vietnam, have experienced fatigue-related crashes.

“A typical motorcycle taxi driver might make over 100 trips and ride up to 500km in a typical week,” explains Truong. “They work long hours, often in stressful working conditions and congested traffic. And compared to a car, there’s additional physical work and concentration required to maintain motorcycle stability.”

These factors play a significant role in the safety of motorcycle taxi drivers.

“Thirty-seven percent of crashes can be attributed to fatigue,” says Truong. “Drivers who work full time, make deliveries or are overweight are more at risk of fatigue-related crashes. Traditional taxi drivers are also at greater risk than those adopting a ride-hailing model.”

“This study highlights the need for immediate interventions to reduce the prevalence of fatigue-related crashes,” adds Truong. “Authorities could consider educational campaigns, and employers could issue warnings for excessive riding hours.”

“It is important that we highlight the issue of fatigue so that drivers and their clients can travel with greater safety.”

Read the paper.

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