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Appeal to parents everywhere please!

Monday July 21, 2014

Parents everywhere, please support BUSK Nightcap campaign.  We have provided a template letter that you can email to your MP and MEP about coach drivers suffering from driver fatigue on school trips abroad.  The more MPs and MEPs that receive this letter the better.  We are asking for road safety critical research to be carried out on the serious issue of the cause of coaches crashes following a report by the European Commission in which it states up to 30% of coach crashes are linked to driver fatigue.  

If your child goes on school trips you will want to make sure that they are safe and driven by a driver who is fully rested.  What you are not likely to be aware of is this...a lot of tour companies used by schools force drivers to share rooms with other drivers, sometimes with drivers from other companies that they have never met before and sometimes drivers of the opposite sex are required to share a room.

If your child is going on a school trip abroad, do you know the questions you should be raising with the school before you agree to sign along the dotted line?  Did you know that on the last day of the trip, it is often the case that the group leader will check everyone out of the hotel after breakfast including the driver before going off on another day's activities?  This means the drivers can be hanging around all day until department around 21:00.  They are no longer refreshed because they may not have had any provision to rest and sleep before departure.  They travel through the night when most of these crashes happen in the early morning hours and normally along motorways.  Many drivers are telling BUSK that they are tired, having been awake all day and then all evening and although their Drivers' Hours Regulations are not exceeded they struggle to keep awake.  This is a long haul 21-hour journey back to the UK shared by two drivers.  If you know about this it gives you the opportunity to do something about it to safeguard your child.

What can you do?  First please seriously consider our template letter - email it to your own MP and MEP. Then please visit the link below to see our national petition to end drivers sharing rooms and to ensure all coach drivers are provided with suitable rooms where they get adeqate rest and sleep.  Make sure you ask your child's school if the drivers on your child's school trip will be sharing rooms or having a room of their own.  If the school does not know, then they have not carried out an adequate written risk assessment of the coach travel.  The risk assessment of coach travel is all too often not thought about fully, however, it is a legal requirement.

For more information visit our website or call 01633 274944.

Link for our national petition: