A.W.G.T.C. Driver Human Maintenance Program
Most Common Health and Fitness Risks for Commercial Drivers
At an occupational health and safety conference held at Wayne State University pointed out that occupational illnesses diminish the quality of life for bus and truck drivers and may lead to premature death.
- Poor health habits: It is estimated that more than 50% of commercial drivers are regular smokers. Many are obese, lack proper physical exercise; tend to develop chronic diseases such as diabetes at relatively early ages. These points also are documented in studies of truck driver and bus driver illnesses.
- Driver injuries: About half of driver injuries involving lost workdays are attributable to sprains, often caused by overexertion such as lifting heavy objects. Most workers’ compensation injuries experienced in the moving, storage, and van lines sector of trucking today are attributable to lifting and awkward posture movements while handling furniture and other items handled in moving and storage work. Studies of drivers loading and unloading cargo seem to corroborate those at-risk features of many truck driving jobs.
- Driver fatigue: Sleep disorders, sleep loss, sleepiness, and driver fatigue from long and irregular work hours increase risks of operational errors, unsafe driving, injuries, and deaths. The NTSB, FMCSA, the American Bus and Trucking Associations, numerous safety advocates and the fatigue research community have documented extensively the issues and research surrounding commercial driver fatigue.
- Being overweight and experiencing obesity. A survey of 3,000 commercial bus and truck drivers indicated more than 40% were overweight and 33% were obese. Both figures are considerably higher than national averages .
- Hypertension or high blood pressure. Recent surveys found 33% of drivers had BP > 140/90 and 11% had BP > 160/95. Such percentages indicate there is considerable room for improvement and add to the rationale that commercial driver health programs must focus on monitoring and preventing hypertension.
- Poor eating and drinking habits, inadequate diet and nutrition. Many truck and bus drivers admit to eating only one or two meals per day instead of the recommended three. Favorite main courses for meals on the road are still steaks and burgers, and many drivers eat numerous “junk food” snacks each day
- Lack of physical activity and proper exercise, degrading states of physical fitness. Low physical activity is a major public health issue despite the considerable health benefits that can be gained from regular activity.
Most drivers do not exercise regularly and reported that only about 10% of commercial drivers regularly participate in aerobic exercise.
Health Issues That May Affect Commercial Driver Safety
While these driver health risks can impact highway safety, many of the readily identifiable effects are more apparent on drivers’ quality of life and life expectancy. Motor vehicle safety is an important public health problem particularly involving commercial drivers. Several studies suggest an association between illnesses among commercial drivers and the increased likelihood of fatal motor vehicle crashes with other drivers among the general public.
A.W.G.T.C Utilizes The Occupational Athletics Bus Athlete Interactive Health & Safety System. A twelve month program designed for professional drivers and operators to make simple changes in their personal health and safety.
Human Maintenance for the Professional Bus Drivers, Truck Drivers, Motorcoach Operators, Transit Operators, and School Bus Drivers
The Bus and Road Athlete Systems are built on a philosophy that we can all be athletes in life. Just as professional athletes must develop specific skills in order to “play” at their best, so do you. Each of the twelve GAMES in these systems are patterned after a lifestyle factor important to both professional athletes and to YOU. As you complete a GAME and move into another, your skills at playing the GAME will become stronger and the quality of your life will improve. You don’t have to dream about a better life…it can become a reality!
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