Fatigued driving endangers not only drivers, but everyone on our streets. Studies show that driving while fatigued can be as dangerous as driving after heavy drinking. As driving time increases, so do the odds of being in a collision. However, TLC rules on driving hours previously only applied to taxi drivers and did not effectively limit the risk of fatigue. Creating an improved strategy to prevent fatigued driving that applies to drivers whether they’re driving a taxi or a for-hire vehicle is an important step toward reaching our City’s Vision Zero goal to end traffic fatalities.
By creating daily and weekly driving hour limits and collecting the data needed to check for compliance, the new fatigued driving prevention rules address the two types of fatigue that can affect driving – acute fatigue and chronic fatigue. Acute fatigue, resulting from not enough sleep on a single day, is linked to a higher risk of traffic crashes and slower response times to pedestrians in the crosswalk. Chronic fatigue, which occurs when people don’t get enough rest over a longer period of time, also makes it difficult to drive safely.