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Indian J Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2011 Jul;63(3):269-73. doi: 10.1007/s12070-011-0235-5. Epub 2011 Apr 30.

Urban bus drivers' sleep problems and crash accidents.


Sleep problems and their direct consequence, sleepiness, results in critical effects on psychomotor skills, memory, decision making, concentration and learning; all of which may play roles in accidents and errors. Despite the importance of quality of sleep among drivers there are only few researches that deal with them. Therefore, we designed this research to better understand possible relationships. This cross-sectional study was performed between 2006 and 2007 among 175 bus drivers of a transportation company in Tehran, the capital of Iran. Participants filled out a questionnaire concerning their demographic and personal history, associated disease, the insomnia index, the Epworth sleepiness scale (ESS), and the apnea index. Then they elaborated their history of crashes. Data was analyzed with the SPSS software through χ(2), Oneway ANOVAs, and Pearson correlation tests. The mean age, and body mass index (BMI) were 43.47 ± 6.85 years and 26.35 ± 3.87 kg/m(2). The mean duration of sleep among these drivers was 6.37 ± 1.62 h per day. The mean accident rate was 2.31 ± 1.83 per year. There was a significant correlation between the insomnia index and BMI (P = 0.014), age (0.00), marital status (0.00), associated disease (0.005), and drug history (0.028). There was a significant relationship between marital status and the ESS, and also between age and accident rate in the past years. Sleep problems were a frequent finding among the studied group and had a significant relationship with their crash history. These results can be an alarming sign to choose bus drivers more carefully and pay more attention to treating their sleep disorders.


Apnea syndrome; Driver; Road accident; Sleep deprivation; Sleep disorder

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