How to Stay Alert on the Road

How to stay Alert on the road

Driving while tired can be extremely dangerous as it only takes one second of drifting off and poor concentration to cause a fatal accident. If you feel sleepy or tired, don’t drive.

Trying to stay awake and alert when you are driving long distances, especially at night can be risky. Here are some signs that tell you that you are tired and need a break:

  • Difficulty focusing, frequent blinking, or heavy eyelids
  • Daydreaming; wandering/disconnected thoughts
  • Trouble remembering the last few miles driven; missing exits or traffic signs
  • Yawning repeatedly or rubbing your eyes
  • Trouble keeping your head up
  • Drifting from your lane, tailgating, or hitting a shoulder rumble strip
  • Feeling restless and irritable

Chrome Car hire Bromley has put together a few things to keep in mind for staying safe when you are behind the wheel.


Make sure you are well-rested before you take off on a long journey. Allow plenty of time for breaks on your itinerary. Try to avoid driving between midnight and early morning.

Limit eating any heavy meals as they might make you feel sleepy. Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages. Ensure you put your mobile phone away so it will not distract you while you are driving.


It’s easy to get caught up in reaching your destination and ignore the signs when you are tired. If you are distracted, struggling to focus, yawning or finding that you are drifting out of your lane, it is time to pull over and take a break.

Keep in mind that arriving late is better than ending up in a car accident. Travelling to the United Kingdom? Ensure to familiarise yourself with the British road rules and signs.


You may want to open your windows and let the fresh air into the car. This can have an effect and make you more alert and awake. Or you can just simply use the air conditioner to relieve the stale, warm air that often contributes to making you feel more tired.


If you are feeling tired, it is essential that you find a safe place to pull over and take a break. Get out of the vehicle and stretch your legs, or get something to eat. Remember to take a 15-minute break every two hours on a long drive to avoid falling asleep at the wheel.


Find something good to listen to so you can focus. Whether it be a radio show, great album or even an audiobook – having something to concentrate on will keep you awake. Alternatively, tune in to the radio on any of the cars we provide here at Chrome Car Hire Bromley, as well as Enterprise Rent a Car Bromley and Europcar Bromley. 


Travelling with a friend or family member is one of the best ways to avoid any accidents. Keep up a conversation, or try some easy and funny driving games to keep you from drifting off.

Of course the above are only short-term solutions for when you begin to feel fatigued while driving, however when you do start to feel very tired, your only option is to STOP driving and only begin again when you are fully refreshed.

In Summary, The best way to make sure your mind and body are in optimal driving shape is to plan ahead and get 7-8 hours of sleep before your drive. Other methods include:

  • The pre-drive nap: taking a short nap before a road trip can help make up for a short night’s sleep.
  • The mid-drive nap: if you find yourself drowsy while driving, pull over to take a short nap of 20 minutes. Make sure you are in a safe location and remember you’ll be groggy for 15 minutes or so after waking up.
  • The Buddy system: It’s safest to drive with a partner on long trips. Pull over every two hours and switch drivers, while the other takes a nap if possible.
  • Don’t rush. Better to arrive at your destination safe than on time.
  • Do not drink alcohol. Even very small amounts of alcohol will enhance drowsiness.
  • Don’t drive between midnight and 6 a.m. Because of your body’s biological rhythm, this is a time when sleepiness is most intense.
  • Drink caffeine: caffeine improves alertness, although be aware that the effects of caffeine will wear off after several hours.

For any further helpful tips & guidance, please drop us an email or a call and we will support as much as we can. 

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