Safety Tip: Driver Fatigue & Seat Design

Improve comfort and reduce driver fatigue with good seating design.

Fatigue of truck drivers is the result of a number of factors and all the factors should be addressed to minimise potentially harmful and dangerous fatigue levels. One important factor is the provision of correctly designed seating and the training of drivers to adjust and use the seating correctly.

The two areas in which good seat design can assist are:

  • Correct body support and ergonomic design to reduce muscle fatigue; and
  • Reduced transmission of vibration.

Good design will provide comfort and reduced fatigue. Areas to consider when choosing seating include:

Ergonomic Design
As a minimum, adjustments must be provided for height, horizontal position and backrest recline angle. Cushion slope and length adjustment and a well designed adjustable lumbar support will help to provide the best possible support for the seated driver.

Lumbar Support Design
Provision of adjustable lumbar support is fundamental to good seat design.

Seat Suspension Design
Suspension seats are usually required for heavy vehicles to reduce the effect of vibration reaching the driver. This is important to minimise the health risks of damaging vibrations and also for driver comfort and reduced fatigue.

Driver Education
When a well designed seat has been provided for the driver it is then important to ensure that the driver is trained in the operation of the seat and the correct method of using the adjustments provided to achieve the best seating position.

Seat Maintenance
To provide the best possible comfort and safety for a driver is to ensure proper maintenance of the seat so it continues to function as designed for the life of the vehicle.

The basic safety checks on the seat mounting, operation of the seat and seat belt, and inspection for structural damage should be carried out as frequently as other safety related checks on items such as brakes and lighting.

A poorly maintained seat may be harmful or dangerous to the driver and will eventually become uneconomic to repair.

For more information on seating systems, contact; the global market leader in the development and manufacture of innovative seating systems for commercial vehicles.

The highest safety standard is our minimum commitment, and we are fully OHS compliant. Contact ustoday to talk about how our experience helps us to ensure that we can get your job delivered in time, without sacrificing safety.

To pursue your art as a creative professional, here are a few things you either need to learn quickly or be able to afford hiring out:

1. Understand selling

Not in the sleazy car-sales or travelling vacuum peddler sense, but in a way that actually provides value to the people you want your art to connect with.

It’s not enough to price your art at “what it’s worth.” The price has to be “what the market is willing to pay for it.” And if you want your art to sell, you’ve got to tell the right people about it in a way that fits your style.

2. Understand money

You’ve got to price your work accordingly, revise as necessary and make sure what’s coming in isn’t less than what’s going out. Keep track of expenses and for the love of Van Gogh, live within your means (or under).

Hire an accountant or keep meticulous records of everything you sell and buy, beyond keeping receipts in shoeboxes (or Evernote).

3. Understand your audience

You aren’t going to please everyone and not everyone is going to want your art. The good thing is that it’s much easier to please the right people than all of the people.

Share your work with them as often as possible. Connect with them, seek them out and offer help/insight when applicable. It’s interesting how much value there is in taking time to listen to what your audience is saying.

4. Understand how to not get taken advantage of.

Contracts are funny things. Most of us creative professionals can’t afford to actually take someone to court, but we also need to be aware that not everyone is an altruistic, loving and most importantly, paying, customer.

Contracts are more important to define a mutual understanding than anything legal. What is a client getting, exactly, when and for how much. Making these things absolutely clear (in writing) goes a very long way towards not getting taken advantage of.

If you aren’t good at or haven’t figured out all four of those things, learn. Take courses, read books, ask others questions. Get good at them quickly or earn enough to hire them out.

If you aren’t comfortable connecting with your audience or selling to them, find an approach or style that does feel comfortable for you. 

I easily spent the first few years working for myself getting taken advantage of – by clients and by the government (ok, that never stops happening, but at least now it’s done in expected and planned for ways). And I didn’t have a clue about connecting with the right people, in the right way. 

Even after many years of working for myself, I still don’t have all the answers and there are lots I still don’t understand. But I’m slightly closer, I think. And now that I have those four bare things under control, I worry about and focus on them less.

If you have a boss (that isn’t you), then someone else will take care of the four above points. Working for yourself as creative means you have to work harder than you would for any employer. It’s more hustling, longer hours and probably less pay (at least at first).

The good thing is that once you have those four bare minimum things under control, you can focus more on your art and defining what success means for you. Being a gifted artist isn’t enough. If you want your art to support your life (financially), make these four bare minimums a priority.