Sometimes taking a better job means traveling a long distance to work. Although it can be fun or exciting to take a long drive when going on a vacation, driving long distances regularly can get challenging.
Drowsy drivers cause thousands of accidents every year, making up about 21 percent of all fatal crashes. It is critical to pay attention to signs you might be drowsy before you get behind the wheel to stay safe on the road.
Here’s what you should know so you can avoid driving when you are too tired.
Knowing you’re too tired
Sometimes the signs you are too tired are easy to see, like feeling yourself drifting off while reading the last emails of the day. In other cases, you may not realize you are dangerously tired until you are behind the wheel. Symptoms you are too tired to drive may include:
- Losing track of where you are
- Missing exits or other traffic signs
- Losing track of your speed (faster or slower)
- Struggling to keep your eyes open
Experiencing these or other similar symptoms could mean that it is time to take preventative measures to avoid an accident.
Successfully staying awake
People who spend a lot of time on the road tend to develop tricks for staying awake. Tricks like leaving the windows open or playing loud music have little evidence to back them up.
When it comes to fighting drowsiness, you may find that you need a short nap before heading out on the road. In some cases, drinking a caffeinated beverage, like soda or coffee, can help, but the effects tend to be a temporary mask.
Often, the safest option is to find an alternative ride when you are too tired to make your commute. It might be challenging to figure out the logistics of getting a ride, but driving when you are overtired can quickly become dangerous.