The 'Free Cuppa for the Driver' scheme is celebrating 10 years in 2020 and six Parkes Shire businesses have put their hands up to help fight driver fatigue and reduce our road toll by offering free cuppas to tired drivers.

Our local businesses will join over 90 businesses across the Hunter, South West and Western regions of NSW to participate in the next phase of the successful 'Free Cuppa for the Driver' scheme. Participating businesses will be encouraging drivers to take regular breaks by offering a free cup of tea or coffee to any driver who is on the road, more than 100kms away from their home.

Since 2010, more than 23,000 free cuppas have been given away.  During that time, across fatigue-related crashes have fallen 19% across NSW.

Parkes, Forbes and Lachlan Shire Councils' Road Safety and Injury Prevention Officer, Melanie Suitor, said that the second biggest killer on NSW roads is drivers who are tired.

“When you fall asleep behind the wheel you aren’t able to react by breaking or moving out of the way of hazards, which means the crash is more likely to be fatal,” Ms Suitor said.

‘Free Cuppas’ are available from a broad range of businesses with varied opening hours, making regular breaks and free cuppas more accessible than ever.

An initiative of local councils and Transport NSW, the 'Free Cuppa for the Driver' scheme runs each year from 1 March to 31 May.

“If it wasn’t for the participating businesses supplying the ‘free cuppa’, then this scheme wouldn’t be possible and I would like to thank the 16 enthusiastic businesses across the Parkes, Forbes and Lachlan Shire Councils who are taking part in this year’s scheme.  Many of whom are returning and we warmly welcome those who are joining us for the first time.  A special shout-out to Forbes Bakehouse who have participated every year for the last 10 years!” Ms Suitor said.

An official launch to celebrate the 10 year milestone will be held in Templar Street Forbes on Thursday 27 February.

The participating businesses in the Parkes Shire for 2020 are:

  • Railway Arts and Crafts (Bogan Gate)
  • Railway Hotel (Bogan Gate)
  • Parkes Coffee Pot
  • Parkes Services Club
  • Pink Orchard Café & Florist
  • Casho's (Tullamore)

The ‘Free Cuppa’ website,, allows drivers to search for the nearest participating business as well as find useful information on the scheme.  The Free Cuppa Facebook page will also keep you up to date on the scheme and the participating businesses.