Statistics estimate that drowsy driving and fatigue contribute to 20% to 30% of all deaths on the road. In fact, the average driver becomes four times more likely to become involved in a fatal crash if he or she drives between 10 p.m. and dawn.
If you have a lengthy road trip or vacation in the near future, you may need to pull a few late-night driving trips in your rental car to arrive at your destination on time. And if you don't have other drivers to help you make the journey, you may need alternative methods for staying awake when you sit behind the wheel.
It's that time of the year when we start thinking about a holiday. For most of us, this has previously meant going overseas, but as we know, we're entering new times in terms of travel and how we spend our holidays compared to previous years. In 2018-2019, Australians took 11.2 million overseas trips more than double the number from 10 years ago.
While the pandemic has put a stop to international travel for the short term, there's plenty to see and do around Australia with road trips. But with all long road trips comes some extra safety precautions to make sure your trip ends up being a safe one.
Statistics estimate that drowsy driving and fatigue contribute to 20 per cent to 30 per cent of all deaths on the road. The average driver becomes four times more likely to become involved in a fatal crash if he or she drives between 10 p.m. and dawn.
If you have a long road trip or vacation in the near future, you may need to pull a few late-night driving trips in your rental car to arrive at your destination on time. And if you don't have other drivers to help you make the journey, you may need alternative methods for staying awake when you sit behind the wheel.
Fortunately, you don't have to trust in coffee alone to keep you alert. The following apps can give you a little extra stimulation as you navigate long stretches of highways and freeways.
This app allows you to drive as though you have another passenger in the car even if you don't. It has functions that will enable you to set up alerts to stay awake, but also a useful feature is the "Talk to me" option. A voice operator will ask you to repeat words, and if you miss one, an alarm will go off. This app has been designed to alert you just enough to stay awake but not enough that it will distract you while driving.
At first, you might think this app will alert you to your next coffee stop, but no, this app gives you a digital caffeine-like vibration jolt to keep you awake. Put your phone in your pocket or on your lap while you drive and receive physical jolts of alertness. As an added benefit, keeping your phone out of eyesight will eliminate distractions.
This feature would be useful for drivers who want to listen to music or talk radio, but also want a second stimulation to help them stay alert. If you're not listening to anything else, you can add sound to accompany the vibrations for an extra alarm. You also control the frequency of the alarms, which is good because you can tailor the app to suit your individual needs.
Much like the Driver Alarm app, Drive Awake uses your phone's camera to detect your eyes. If you seem sleepy, the app will sound an alarm. For your convenience, the app also uses your GPS settings and map to redirect you to the closest Café Amazon store so you can buy a cup of coffee. Unfortunately, Café Amazon locations in Australia are few and far between. If you plan to travel anywhere other than Western Australia, you may want to stick to the detection and alarm settings and ignore the map directions entirely.
According to a French study on sleep attention, blue light can increase alertness, visual perception, and reflexes, much like a cup of coffee can. The Drowsy Driving Alert functions around this principal and emits a solid blue light on your screen.
Although a blue screen may seem simple in concept and function, many reviewers give it high praise for mildly drowsy driving.
Do you need a little more stimulation than merely loud noises or lights? This Android app requires you to press a reset button every few seconds (which you determine depending on your exhaustion level). The app will warn you to press the button, and if you fail, the alarm will sound until you press it. While this can be a good idea, be wary it could present a driving distraction as well.
While these apps can help you stay awake to an extent, you should err on the side of caution and only drive when you feel refreshed and alert. If you have to drive especially long hours on your next road trip, remember to take a break every two hours or so to stretch your legs and take a nap as needed. If you can, complete most of your travelling time during the middle of the day and limit the time behind the wheel at night.
When you follow these tips, you significantly reduce your chance of injuring yourself and others.
If you are looking for a reasonable price on a hire vehicle to hit the road with on your next road trip, then get in touch with us here at 1300 Meteor for a great deal.