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Tips to Help You Stay Awake at the Wheel

10/21/2013

Are you currently preparing to take a long distance trip? Sure, when you decide to plan a cross country journey with friends, family, or even solo, you stand the potential of having a great time -prior to and after reaching your destination. However, when you put yourself in a situation where you will be driving a long distance, up to hours at a time, you face the risk of falling asleep at the wheel. Follow these useful tips to help ensure you keep both eyes wide open during the travel time of your voyage:

Let Someone Else Drive

Of course, if you're feeling particularly sleepy while driving, the most logical thing to do is to let someone else take over the driving responsibilities. However, this option is only available if you're not going to be driving stag. If you've going to have a car full of people or at least someone riding shotgun, then you'll have assistance in the entertainment department. If you're going to be alone in the vehicle, keep reading.

Avoid Cruise Control

You may believe that setting your cruise control could assist you during a long driving trip. However, this process could actually work against you. If you're already tired, you'll want to avoid the method of driving that allows you to stay at a constant speed without having to use your foot or much concentration. It's important to stay alert and focused, constantly shifting speeds and switching lanes, if needed.

Play Games

There are plenty of road trip games you can participate in, such as: I Spy, 20 Questions, and any type of activity that involves license plates. This tactic may seem childish, but it could also help keep you awake during your travel time. Again, this method works best if you're not going to be alone in the car. However, you can still play games in the vehicle by yourself - use your imagination. If you're not a big gamer, then try singing. Blast the radio and have your own concert.

Keep the Atmosphere Cool

When your vehicle temperature is cozy and warm, you stand a greater chance of dozing off. If you feel yourself slipping into sleep, try turning on the air conditioner. Allow the cold air to flow through your car, which will hopefully keep your body numb and your mind alert. Depending on the outside weather, you may find opening the window to be a helpful method, too. When cold, windy air is hitting you in the face, you will most likely find it more difficult to close your eyes and fall asleep.

Pull Over and Take a Nap

If you're feeling particularly exhausted and believe that there's a chance you could possibly drift off while driving, the best and safest thing to do is pull over and take a nap. Find a hotel or a safe place to stop and let yourself take a break for a couple of hours. Sure, there are various ways (as mentioned above) to help keep you awake. However, the only reasonable method of dealing with tiredness is to sleep. If you're well rested when you get behind the wheel, you're less likely to fall asleep while driving.

Keep Alert, Stay Safe

Staying awake and alert at the wheel is a surefire way to potentially avoid an accident. Driving, especially in long periods of time, can become a tedious task. However, it's important for your safety, as well as the safety of others on the road, to be conscious of your actions. To view more road safety tips, click here.

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