The following are warning signs:
- Your eyes close or go out of focus
- You don't remember driving the past few miles
- You have wandering, disconnected thoughts
- You have trouble keeping your head up
- You yawn repeatedly
- You find yourself drifting out of your driving lane, driving on the rumble strip, accidentally tailgating or missing traffic signs, etc.
Ways to avoid driving tired are:
- Get plenty of sleep the night before a trip
- Do not plan to work all day and drive all night
- Plan to drive during the time of day when you are normally awake
- Stay overnight rather than driving straight through to your destination
- Drive with an awake passenger and ask them to help decide when you are too tired to continue
- Schedule a break every two hours or 100 miles
- Find a safe place to stop and nap
"While most drowsy-related crashes occur in the middle of the night, there is also a peak in a sleep-related crashes in the middle of the afternoon," said Fairclough. "These hours are when our natural sleep rhythms set in so it is a good idea to plan your trip with enough time to take a break and nap during these afternoon hours."