Driving is the most convenient way for most people to get to their workplace, home, or school. Because many people are driving daily to and from their destination, many road accidents could happen. Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicates that 36,096 people died in 2019 due to motor vehicle accidents in the US. Most of these accidents are usually a result of human error, among them sleeping while driving.
Drowsiness is a common occurrence, mainly because most people are usually tired while driving especially in the evening. Sleepiness also commonly occurs in drivers whose full-time job is to drive. However, it is crucial to be careful as driving while sleepy may prove dangerous. Here are a few things that you can do to ensure that you are alert and awake when on the road.
1. Get adequate sleep
You are supposed to get 7-8 hours of sleep every day. This ensures that you are rejuvenated and alert as you go about your daily business. If you fail to receive this much sleep, you will likely become sleepy and sluggish during the day. Sluggishness makes you a better candidate for causing driving accidents.
Therefore, to keep yourself and other road users safe ensure that you get sufficient sleep before heading out on the road. Sleeping will also help refresh your mind and reduce your stress levels, which will help you be more alert. Additionally, drivers behind the wheel for long hours such as truck drivers need occasional rests. Taking a nap for just one hour after long miles will go a long way.
Truck accidents are especially catastrophic and much influenced by drowsiness and exhaustion. These accidents may leave you with grave injuries and it may also drain you financially. If you are a truck accident victim, you should get a reputable truck accident attorney to represent you. This attorney will ensure that you get compensated which will help you make a quick recovery rather than worry about finances.
2. Have a driving companion
Sometimes all you need to stay alert and kick off monotony is to have some good company. Driving with a companion offers you just that, especially if you will be driving over long distances. Catching up on the latest news will keep you excited and motivated to keep driving.
Furthermore, your companion can take over from you when you begin to feel drowsy. This is common among long-distance drivers who drive for extensive periods. The next time you go on a long trip, consider bringing a companion.
3. Listen to music
Music is known to keep you focused and alert to your surroundings if you are enjoying it immensely. Therefore, another way to ward off sleep is to play some good music as you drive. You can even go a step ahead and make a playlist of good songs whose lyrics you know. As you sing along, you will remain alert as you drive.
Alternatively, you can put on your favorite radio station and listen to the interviews as you enjoy the music.
4. Time your drives
Another way to avoid being sleepy while driving is to drive at your most alert hours if it is possible. You can choose to go at 8 am rather than in the early morning hours, for instance, 4 am. That is because you will likely be more alert then than in the early morning, as your body may be accustomed to being at rest during early hours.
If this isn’t a possibility, then ensure that you remain vigilant as you drive. Look out for signs of exhaustion or drowsiness while you’re behind the wheel. If you notice that you are too sleepy, park safely at the side of the road and rest before continuing.
Drowsiness while driving is a road hazard and may cause you and other road users much harm. Follow these tips and they will help you in becoming a more alert and focused driver.