Belfast Telegraph

Dangers of drowsy drivers revealed

By Linda Stewart

One in three drivers admits splashing water on their face at rest stops in a vain bid to stay awake.

That’s according to shocking new figures released by road safety charity Brake, which revealed that more than three in four UK drivers admit to getting behind the wheel when drowsy.

In Northern Ireland, 29 people have died in the last five years as a result of driver fatigue, Road Safety Minister Edwin Poots revealed last night.

And, according to the most recent Northern Ireland Road Safety Monitor in October last year, 27% of drivers who responded admitted getting behind the wheel when they felt drowsy.

The minister said he was shocked at the number of people who admitted to driving while sleepy — and warned that it can be as serious as drink-driving. “This puts yourself, your passengers and other road users in danger,” he said.

Research released by Brake and Direct Line shows that many drivers don’t know the difference between fact and fiction on tackling sleepiness at the wheel.

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