80% Of Male Truckers Overweight and at Rick of OSA

Last updated on July 7th, 2023 at 02:18 pm

RoadTransport.com today reports that eight in ten of male truck drivers in the UK are overweight. In the article, a health education warns truckers must improve their lifestyle or face serious consequences.

“The results are a cause for concern because they indicate that there is a very high percentage of drivers on the road whose health makes them a potential hazard. A waist measurement of 40 inches or more and a Body Mass Index of 30 or more can spell danger because both are indicators of a high risk of Type 2 diabetes, which in turn can trigger sleep apnoea.”

That seems to be what caused three deaths earlier in the year, when a trucker slammed into a traffic jam. The lorry driver was later diagnosed with severe sleep apnoea but let off by the jury because at the time he didn’t know he had sleep problems.

Road Transport further reports:  The average age of drivers surveyed was 51 but on average they had the metabolism of someone two years older. Average height was 5ft 8in (177.5cm) average weight was 14.4 stone (91.6kg) and average waist was 40.5in. The survey also found that most had a high pulse rate and BMI.

These measurements will sound familiar to most CPAP users and Obstructive Sleep Apnoea sufferers. Whilst being overweight is by no means the only cause of OSA, it does appear to be the most contributing factor in the majority of cases.

The good news is that almost all drivers welcomed regular health checks including blood pressure, blood sugar levels, cholesterol levels, waist measurement and body mass index. Add to this blood oxygen saturation and you have a decent setup for screening these people who may be posing a serious threat to fellow road users. Had this been in place already, perhaps the accident mentioned above could have been prevented.

If you drive a lot and suspect sleep related breathing trouble, please read the following blog post here on the CPAP blog: Sleepy Driving and Sleep Apnoea

I also recommend  visiting osaonline.com

Take the online sleep test if you are unsure about your what your symptoms could mean.