get a good night's sleep to avoid road fatigue and stay safe

10 Ways to Fight Driver Fatigue and Have a Great Road Trip


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Summer holidays means lots to do outside in the warm, inviting air, with plenty of places to go and people to see. It also brings about the likelihood of some unforgettable driving holidays. This extra time behind the wheel leads us to an important question… How to avoid driver fatigue and maintain road safety to avoid any unwanted mishaps?

In this article PD Insurance lists not one but 10 tips on how to accomplish this. Read them all to help keep you safe when getting from A to B so you can enjoy your commutes and road trips in oh-so-safe style.

Here’s what we’ve got:

Take regular pit stops on road trips - it can be fun

#1 Take rest stops to avoid driver fatigue

Even if you’re feeling on top of the world it’s safety-conscious to take regular stops roughly every two hours at minimum. Regular pit stops help prevent driver fatigue and therefore improve road safety. That’s why a lot of new cars have the driver alert/rest now warning as one of their car safety features.

On road trips, scenic stops often add to the good vibes and become lasting memories that make the holiday that much better. That arbitrary bench on a tree you sat at sipping coffee and eating a sandwich? It’s a place you may never get to eat at again, making it a one of a kind memory on your journey to your destination.

#2 Maintain good posture

You’ve probably noticed that if you’re feeling sluggish at your computer you’re also hunching. When you straighten up and give your spine the room it needs then you also open your lunges and breath better. Just like when you’re at your desk, sitting well behind the wheel helps you focus and minimises driver fatigue.

Seems simple, but works like a wonder!

#3 Avoid big meals

The idea of having a siesta after lunch is because you use energy to digest your food. It’s precisely why you should avoid eating big, heavy or greasy meals when you’re doing any long distance driving.

It may be hard to pinpoint when and where burgers and chips are connected to fatigue on the road, but you betcha the stomach and digestive juices just want somewhere relaxing to time out when they’re busy.

Looking for good alternatives? Read about these healthy car snacks for kids and adults.

#4 Start out early to prevent driver fatigue

When you’re taking a road trip, getting out early is best practice for avoiding driver fatigue. You’re generally more alert in the morning and have your whole day of energy supplies ahead of you. If you start early enough you can also avoid any traffic jams and get out onto the open road to enjoy the mid-morning splendour of rolling hills et al.

Avoid driver fatigue by sharing the driving with your co-drivers

#5 Take turns co-driving

If you have co-drivers sharing the trip, don’t push yourself too hard. It’s better to share the driving out evenly between drivers to ensure everyone gets to the holiday destination feeling refreshed.

Be sure all the drivers are listed on the car insurance policy to give yourself financial peace of mind.

#6 Play music and car games

Keep yourself alert by playing music – not too loudly though because you want to hear other vehicles around you. You should also plan a bunch of games to play in the car with your passengers because this helps keep you and everyone else engaged during the car trip.

#7 Get enough sleep

Try to get a good night’s sleep the night before setting off on your journey. This is a really simple but effective way to avoid driver fatigue, or any fatigue really. Go to bed early, turn your phone on silent, set your road trip wake-up alarm and rest assured you’ll be as ready as possible in the morning.

#8 Avoid driver fatigue by staying hydrated

Keep sipping on liquids like water and fresh juice to stay hydrated. It’s impossible to maintain steely focus when your cells aren’t getting quenched. As simple as this step seems, skipping it can really ruin your mood and your drive.

While we’re talking liquids, avoid getting over-caffeinated – caffeine in the right doses is great for your focus. But too much can work against you, making you need too many loo stops, drying you out and jangling your nerves.

good posture helps you stay alert behind the wheel

#9 Stretch to improve your road safety

Do some easy stretches whenever you take a stop off the road. It helps you get into a good breathing rhythm and combats weary muscles from sitting bunched up behind the wheel.

Even a few minutes of stretching does wonders for overall health and the results are immediate. It’s so easy to do and helps you combat driver fatigue like a ninja… OK, maybe not to that extent, but you get what we mean.

#10 Keep a cool head with driver fatigue

If you’re feeling dozy, cooling down can actually help you perk up. In Aussie summer, a regional road trip especially can get pretty hot, pretty quickly. Open up the window and let the breeze wash over you or amp up the air conditioning. Beating the heat is going to keep you feeling fresh but more importantly it will help your focus on the asphalt.

Choose award winning car insurance for the road

In addition to fighting driver fatigue, choosing quality, affordable and award winning car insurance helps you enjoy your drive knowing you’ve got safeguards in place.

Whether you bump into someone’s mobility scooter trailer while reversing out of the service station, or your car is damaged in a fire or theft (or attempted theft), these are just some of the situations car insurance helps pay for.

You can even add 24/7 road assistance for a minimal once off annual fee. Click below for a free comprehensive car insurance quote today from PD Insurance.

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