Do not ignore fatigue – it will kill you!

Your body jerks - you are somewhat stunned. What did I miss? How did I get here? You are still alive, but if you ignore this experience while driving again, it may cost you dearly.

We live in a demanding world and often, we do not get enough sleep. This is particularly rife among long-distance drivers. but not exclusive to them. This is why it is wise that when you travel long distances, you stop and take a break every two hours. If you experience fatigue during your daily drives, the same advice applies.

MasterDrive’s CEO, Eugene Herbert, said despite research, fatigue does not receive as much attention as driving under the influence. “If you are driving to a holiday destination or to visit family for the festive period, ensure you know exactly how dangerous it is and take all the necessary steps so that you or your family do not become victims of this dangerous occurrence.

“Start by ensuring you do not leave all your holiday preparation to the day, or worse, the night before. Do it early enough that there is time to unwind the day before leaving and that you have an early night. Wake up rested and ready to take on the day of driving.”

Reduce your risk of drowsy driving as much as possible. “If you can, travel with another person who can share driving responsibilities with you. Each person should drive for approximately two hours before swapping. If you are the only driver, stop every two hours for a break from driving, to stretch your legs and possibly get something healthy to eat and drink.

“If you are driving with children, ensure they are stimulated and have enough to keep them entertained. Even though they may not be behind the wheel, driving tires them out just as much as you. Pack or plan plenty of games that can be played in the car as well as other activities such as colouring. If it will not be a distraction to you, include some technology in their entertainment, such as movies on tablets.”

Lastly, make healthy choices. “Avoid sugar rushes. Do not rely on fast food and convenience store snacks, as these often do not provide good options for a day in the car. Rather pack additional protein, fruits and lots of water to be sure you have healthy snacks readily available.

“Caffeinated drinks: for some, these do not affect alertness negatively and are essential to stay energised throughout the trip. For others, it gives an initial burst of energy and later results in a slump in energy. Be aware of how caffeine affects you and keep this in mind before making your drink choices.”

Be warned – ignoring drowsiness during driving will be at your own peril!

Source: MotorPress

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