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THE UNIVERSITY OF ADELAIDE
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Publication Details

TitleReview of the literature on coffee stops as a road safety measure
AuthorsWundersitz LN, Baldock MRJ
Year2008
TypeReport
AbstractCaffeine is a widely available mild stimulant thought to promote alertness. It has been suggested that the consumption of caffeine could be promoted at designated ‘coffee stops’ by the side of the road in rest areas. However, there is some concern that coffee stops might encourage driving when a driver should be resting. Although such roadside initiatives have been operating in Australia and overseas for many years, there are few quantitative evaluations examining the road safety benefits of such programs. Based on empirical research evidence, there is some support for the provision of coffee at roadside rest stops to temporarily alleviate fatigue when driving. However, the combination of drinking caffeine (approximately two cups of coffee) and napping (i.e., 15 minutes) during a break appears to be more beneficial than caffeine alone. Therefore, to enhance the beneficial effects of coffee stops, drivers feeling fatigued should be encouraged to take a 10 to 15 minute nap and to consume coffee. However, even though caffeine has a beneficial effect in alleviating fatigue, these effects are only temporary, lasting for about two hours. Consequently, caffeine alone should not be promoted as a substitute for sleep.
Report NumberCASR041
PublisherCentre for Automotive Safety Research
Publisher CityAdelaide
SponsorMotor Accident Commission
ISBN9781920947446
ISSN1449-2237
Page Count22

Reference
Wundersitz LN, Baldock MRJ (2008) Review of the literature on coffee stops as a road safety measure (CASR041), Centre for Automotive Safety Research, Adelaide.


Files Available for Download
CASR041.pdfReport in PDF format as published