Invest In How To Stay Awake, Awake, Awake!

In Australia it is estimated that about twenty percent (20%) of road accidents are caused by drowsy driving, drowsy being defined as that state somewhere between wakefulness and being asleep with a momentary loss of awareness as one dozes off involuntarily or manages to stay conscious but undergoes fluctuating states of alertness and non-awareness, with the latter possibly occurring even with eyes that are not shut. Although being drunk may potentially induce sleepiness, it does not necessarily follow that getting drunk will surely result in falling asleep. The trick is to know how to stay awake and consequently, stay safe.

It is becoming increasingly important for Australia (and countries around the world) to manage these problems on account of the growing number of road accidents that have been occurring. Downsizing has become a sound business practice for businesses in order to lower costs and gain profits. It has however come at a price for transportation companies because fewer employees may also mean heavier workloads. Drivers for these public utility vehicles may experience having to perform jobs that go beyond the normal hours wherein productivity can still peak. Decreasing manpower resources is not the only method shrewed business owners like to enforce.

The great Kempsey Bus Crash happened around Christmastime, December 22, 1989 to be exact. It is by far considered the worst bus accident in Australia, killing a whopping thirty-five (35) passengers and injuring forty-one (41) others. The reason is obvious: the impact was so strong as to cause one bus to go as far forward into the other bus by as much as five (5) rows. Seats bolted to the floor snapped off so that they and the people seated in them flew about with great force. And for what? Because the driver and management did not pay attention on how to stay awake. awake, awake! And as if that was not enough, can you guess what happened to the two buses? Well, neither did I.

The manufacturer Denning refurbished both units which were made operational by their corresponding bus lines, Trans City and McCafferty’s. Body numbers 1378 and 1379 were assigned respectively, but the former eventually became the property of the latter in 1992 together with other bus units which it had acquired by sale when Trans City closed down. It should have been a hard lesson on how to stay awake and keep passengers safe for McCafferty’s, but eerily on another December 22 fourteen (14) years thereafter, the same bus 1378 figured in another accident, having collided head-on with a truck on its way to Rockhampton along Bruce Highway. Fortunately, there were no fatalities except for the bus which could no longer be saved this time around. Finally, it can rest in pieces knowing no more souls will be taken by drivers and management who refuse to invest on how to stay awake behind the wheel.