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Truck drivers: their health is your wealth

Published on: 12 April 2018

It is well-known that South Africa has some of the worst road-safety statistics in the world. The death or injury of loved ones exacts a high social cost, but accidents also hit the economy hard – business vehicles have to be repaired or replaced and often goods in transit are destroyed or delayed.

Many truck drivers on our roads today suffer from sleep deprivation, back and neck problems, poor lifestyle and fitness habits, as well as stress. These problems contribute to drivers being unhealthy - increasing the risk of strokes, diabetes, heart problems and circulatory problems, never mind accidents on the road due to poor reaction time.

Besides adhering to general safety regulations and managing work schedules, trucking companies may want to look at offering drivers the following benefits in order to improve the safety of their drivers, goods in transit and other road users:

  • Regular health checks - for example, blood pressure, glucose levels, eye tests and HIV screenings.
  • Informational sessions about the symptoms of possible health problems, such as chest pains, sudden dizziness, cognitive confusion, as well as how to conduct regular safety checks on vehicles and keep up good driving habits.
  • General training on how to make wise lifestyle choices: how to promote better sleeping patterns, planning ahead to bring healthy food and snacks on trips, etc.
  • Providing access to back-support cushions and sunglasses for long trips.
  • Two drivers for especially long distances (where possible). A higher wage bill could be offset by greater productivity and fewer accidents.

Healthy drivers are more likely to be safe drivers, with a big impact on other road users and the logistic company’s bottom line. Also known as heavy commercial vehicle cover, MiWay's insurance cover for your truck includes towing and recovery, lost or damaged keys or remotes, as well as roadside assistance.