NEWCASTLE, England, Sept. 20 (UPI) — Almost 80 percent of drivers on British roads fail to take sufficient breaks, increasing the risk of involvement in a collision, a researcher said.
Study leader Dr. Joan Harvey, a psychologist at Newcastle University in England, said drivers need to stop at every third service station — or every 90 minutes — on long trips to ensure they do not become bored and put themselves at risk.
The study, for Confused.com, an online comparison insurance service, showed one-third of motorists in Britain shun motorway service stations on long trips and risk their lives and the lives of others as a result.
One in seven drivers said they would not take any breaks at all during a 4-hour trip, the study said.
“When driving on motorways, or other monotonous roads, a motorist’s maximum concentration level is only maintained for 20 to 30 minutes, after this time they will start to become bored and will drive on ‘auto-pilot,'” Harvey said in a statement. “After a further 40 minutes of driving their blood sugar levels will drop. These two factors are a dangerous combination as the motorist will start to feel sleepy and will be slower to react to any hazards that might occur.”