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1 IN 10 DRIVERS FALL ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL; Campaign to keep motorists alert and safe.

Byline: SARAH Sarah or Sarai: see Sara.
Sarah

(flourished early 2nd millennium BC) In the Hebrew scriptures, the wife of Abraham and mother of Isaac. She was childless until age 90.
 STACK

MORE than one in 10 drivers have fallen asleep behind the wheel of a car, road safety chiefs revealed yesterday.

A new survey found more than half of all motorists have also tried to beat tiredness by opening windows or other ineffective ways.

The Road Safety Authority fears driver fatigue fatigue, in engineering
fatigue, in engineering, microscopic cracking of materials, especially metals, after repeated applications of stress. Fissures may be formed within pieces of metal during their manufacture when, while cooling from the molten state,
 is a silent killer silent killer Silent lesion Medtalk Popular for a condition that may progress to very advanced stages before manifesting itself clinically  which could have claimed the lives of 350 people over the last three years.

In a bid to combat it and target other killer behaviours on roads throughout the Easter Bank Holiday weekend, Topaz service stations will hand out free coffee while gardai will focus on catching reckless reckless adj. in both negligence and criminal cases, careless to the point of being heedless of the consequences ("grossly" negligent). Most commonly this refers to the traffic misdemeanor "reckless driving.  drivers.

RSA's Noel Brett said scientific studies show a motorist who persistently fights sleep is as dangerous as a drink driver.

He added: "Last Easter two people died on Irish roads and last St Patrick's weekend eight people were killed. We want people to be aware of the dangers they face, particular in relation to driver fatigue.

"If every one one of us takes responsibility then families will not be planning funerals over this weekend." The RSA survey of 800 motorists found 14 per cent of people nodded off when driving, with men between 35 and 54 years most likely to fall asleep.

Half of all incidents occurred between 9pm and 6am, with one in five cars drifting out of its lane of traffic. If a driver has a micro-sleep for just four seconds while travelling at 100km/h the car will move 111 metres with no control.

Mr Brett revealed tired drivers should stop, take a caffeine caffeine (kăfēn`), odorless, slightly bitter alkaloid found in coffee, tea, kola nuts (see cola), ilex plants (the source of the Latin American drink maté), and, in small amounts, in cocoa (see cacao).  drink, have a 15 minute nap and then a short walk.

Topaz plans to give away up to 20,000 free coffees on the Friday of every Bank Holiday weekend at its 105 companyowned stations around the country to help get people to their destinations safely.

But while the number of people killed on the road so far this year has dropped we will of extra to 59 from 80 last year - gardai said drink driving arrests rose 41 per cent last Easter to 69.

Chief Supt Gabriel McIntyre of the National Traffic Bureau revealed 1,000 members of the Garda Traffic Corps will be out in force over the break to tackle drivers speeding, taking drink or drugs and not wearing seatbelts.

He said: "Every accident is one too many and this particular weekend we will have a lot of extra resources.

"We are encouraging people to stop when they feel any sense of tiredness.

We are out to ensure people can start their journey and end there journey safely."

CAPTION(S):

APPEAL Traffic Garda Kevin McNulty, Topaz chief Eddie O Brien and chief of RSA Noel Brett yesterday in Dublin
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Apr 9, 2009
Words:455
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