The Transport Accident Commission (TAC) will run the ‘Pause Stops’ program after its data found drowsy driving contributed to 16 to 20 per cent of all fatalities on Victorian roads.
Being awake for 17 hours has the same effect on a driver’s ability as a blood alcohol concentration of 0.05, research has shown.
Going without sleep for 24 hours has the same effect as a blood alcohol level of 0.1, which is double the legal limit.
The TAC will set up ‘Pause Stops’ on several major routes, including in Marong near Bendigo, and in Bungalally on the way to Gippsland, on December 26, December 27 and January 3.
The road stops will feature complimentary barista-made coffee, deck chairs for 15-minute powernaps and games and activity packs to entertain children while parents relax.
Some of the road stops will also features stalls from local businesses to help towns recover after a lack of tourism.
Drivers are being urged to be well rested, to plan their trips ahead of time and to take breaks every two hours.
Roads Minister Ben Carroll has warned Victorians not to let the excitement of being able to travel after COVID-19 restrictions distract them from the risk of driving long distances.
“The best present you can give your loved ones this festive season is your presence.”
TAC Chief Executive Joe Calafiore has encouraged drivers to take their time while travelling.
“If you find yourself daydreaming, missing exits or drifting from your lane, take a break and consider a 15-minute powernap. There are plenty of places to stop all throughout the state.”
The ‘Pause Stops’ are in addition to numerous truck and rest stops on Victorian roads.
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