Driver fatigue management
Fatigue management for commercial vehicle drivers
Driver fatigue is a foreseeable risk for all drivers. For drivers of commercial vehicles it is an occupational hazard which, under Occupational Safety and Health laws, must be managed by a safe system of work.
The Code of Practice on Fatigue Management for Commercial Vehicle Drivers provides guidance on what a safe system should consider. The Code provides guidance to industry, the authorities and the Courts. The Code provides a defence against prosecution and the basis for prosecution.
Driver fatigue is one of the most significant safety hazards facing the road transport industry world-wide. Bus and truck crashes are dangerous and costly to all road users, and fatigue is a major contributor.
Fatigue means a gradual loss of alertness that leads to occasional nodding off and then sleep. Fatigue causes drowsy driving. Drowsy drivers are more likely to have a crash by running off the road or having a head-on collision.
The three main causes of drowsy driving are too little sleep, driving when you would normally be asleep and working or being awake for very long hours. Other factors like highway boredom, road conditions and weather compound these major causes.
To prevent fatigue related crashes, these factors need to be managed through correct scheduling practices, training and education. The Code is an important tool in making this accepted industry practice.
|Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (Safety branch): Worksafe|
|Road Safety Commission: Fatigue|
National Driver Work Diary
For interstate bus and truck drivers only
Do you travel outside Western Australia or the Northern Territory?
In 2014 the Heavy Vehicle National Law introduced new nationally consistent Heavy Vehicle Driver Fatigue laws in all Australian Jurisdictions (with the exception of WA and the NT where the Heavy Vehicle National Law has not been adopted).
The Heavy Vehicle (Fatigue Management) National Regulation sets work and rest limits for heavy vehicle drivers and requires better management of driver fatigue. If you drive a fatigue regulated heavy vehicle or heavy vehicle combination with a gross vehicle mass over 12,000 kg or a bus with more than 12 adult seats including the driver's, and drive to or though South Australia or any Australian jurisdiction (excluding WA and NT) these laws apply to you. The drivers' work/rest details must be recorded in the National Driver Work Diary.
You must fill in a Work Diary unless your journey is within a radius of 100 kilometres from the place of business from which your vehicle normally operates.
Note: If the driver base is not recorded, the driver base will be taken to be the garaged address of the regulated heavy vehicle.
To assist drivers travelling outside of Western Australia and the Northern Territory an arrangement has been made for the work diaries to be issued at a number of Western Australian Driver and Vehicle Services Centres.
Where to obtain a National Driver Work Diary
You can obtain the National Driver Work Diary, upon personal attendance, with your valid driver's licence and payment of the required fee, from:
National driver work diary fee
|National driver work diary||$25.00|
|Service Type||Suburb||Business Name||Phone number||Phone number (secondary)||Fax||Pre-booking required||Business Hours||Street address||Postal address||Business Type||Vehicle type||Comments|
|DoT licensing services location||Albany||Department of Transport Centre Albany (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||Monday to Friday 8:15 am until 4:30 pm. CTT and HPT must commence before 3:45 pm. (excludes public holidays)||178 Stirling Terrace, Albany WA 6330||Department of Transport|
|DoT licensing services location||Broome||Department of Transport Centre Broome (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||Monday to Friday 8:15 am until 4:30 pm. CTT and HPT must commence before 3:45 pm. (excludes public holidays)||9 Old Kennedy Store, Napier Terrace, Broome WA 6725||Department of Transport|
|DoT licensing services location||Bunbury||Department of Transport Centre Bunbury (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||Monday to Friday 8:15 am until 4:30 pm. CTT and HPT must commence before 3:45 pm. (excludes public holidays)||24 Wellington Street, Bunbury WA 6230||Department of Transport|
|DoT licensing services location||Cannington||Driver and Vehicle Services Centre Cannington (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||1480 Albany Highway (entrance via William Street), Cannington WA 6107||Department of Transport|
|DoT licensing services location||Geraldton||Department of Transport Centre Geraldton (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||65 Chapman Road, Geraldton WA 6530||Department of Transport|
|DoT licensing services location||Kalgoorlie||Department of Transport Centre Kalgoorlie (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||35 Brookman Street, Kalgoorlie WA 6430||Department of Transport|
|DoT licensing services location||Karratha||Department of Transport Centre Karratha (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||20 Sharpe Avenue, Karratha WA 6714||Department of Transport|
|DoT licensing services location||Kununurra||Department of Transport Centre Kununurra (Licensing services)||13 11 56||No||Monday to Friday 9:00am until 3:30pm. CTT and HPT must commence before 2:45pm. Driving assessments by appointment only. (excludes public holidays)||Messmate Way, Kununurra WA 6743||Department of Transport|
Review of the Commercial Driver Fatigue Management Code of Practice
The Code of Practice has been reviewed and a number of key changes to the operating standards have been made.
The key operating standards and components of the Code have also been incorporated into regulation under the Occupational Safety and Health Act. The regulations, which came into effect on 1 July 2003, will improve enforcement of fatigue management and ensure that companies are not able to financially benefit from operating outside accepted industry practice.
The changes to the operating standards reflect a change in emphasis from hours of work to hours of rest. Adequate and timely rest is key to the management of fatigue and safer work practices. At the same time more operational flexibility is allowed for operators and drivers but within constraints.