Sleep habits, sleepiness and accidents among truck drivers

Arq Neuropsiquiatr. 2005 Dec;63(4):925-30. doi: 10.1590/s0004-282x2005000600004. Epub 2005 Dec 15.


Objective: To evaluate the quality of sleep, shift work, alcohol and psychostimulant drug use, and the prevalence of accidents among truck drivers.

Method: Data were collected using a demographic questionnaire, the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) and the Pittsburgh sleep quality index (PSQI). Statistical analysis was conducted using the Student t, chi-square, Pearson and Fisher tests.

Results: 43.2% of the drivers drove over 16 h a day, and 2.9% worked shifts. Mean number of sleep hours/day was 5.97+/-1.47; 23.8% slept <5 hours; 50.9% made use of alcohol, 95.6% of caffeine, and 11.1% of amphetamines. Mean PSQI was 4.95+/-2.56; 35.4% had a PSQI >5; 23 subjects snored more than three times a week (11.1%). Mean ESS was 6.56+/-4.2; 21.7% had a score >10. In the preceding five years, 27 drivers (13.1%) were involved in accidents, 5 of which resulted in injuries and 3 in deaths.

Conclusion: Results showed a high prevalence of sleep disorders, use of alcohol and psychostimulant drugs, and accidents.

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Traffic / statistics & numerical data*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Automobile Driving / statistics & numerical data*
  • Brazil / epidemiology
  • Habits
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motor Vehicles
  • Occupational Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Sleep Disorders, Circadian Rhythm / epidemiology*
  • Sleep*
  • Work Schedule Tolerance / physiology