Professional drivers and everyone else who operates a motor vehicle shouldn’t be on the road if they are feeling drowsy. This is because drowsy driving can mimic drunk driving and decrease your alertness behind the wheel.

In fact, each year, law enforcement across the country reports about 100,000 crashes involving drowsy drivers. Knowing the signs of fatigue and how to detect and manage it could save you from a minor or fatal crash.

Get ample rest

Put simply, one of the best ways you can manage drowsiness is by getting enough rest. Being awake for more than 20 hours may lead you to driving like your blood alcohol content is at the legal limit. If you know you are going to experience a long day and will be doing some driving, then try squeezing in a nap. Otherwise, getting regular and consistent sleep at night, about seven hours, can help you keep your focus through the day.

Use fatigue detection app

Some newer cars have lane a detection tool to alert drivers when they veer from their lane without signaling. And some even have face detection technology to track facial features of a fatigued driver. But, if your car doesn’t come with these kind of gadgets, you can download an app that uses your phone’s camera to track facial features that hint at fatigue, like eyelids closing or head nodding.

Know the signs and pull over

Even if you use the aid of technology, there are typical signs of drowsy driving that are worth being aware of whether you are behind the wheel or riding in the passenger seat.

The National Safety Council cites these actions as symptoms of drowsy driving:

  • Swerving in and out of your lane
  • Excessive yawning
  • Not driving the speed limit
  • Forgetting where you are on the road
  • Not driving the speed limit
  • Eyes closing uncontrollably
  • Head nodding off

If you notice that you are dosing off or essentially feel lost behind the wheel, try pulling over to a safe spot to regroup before continuing your route. Too many accidents happen everyday as it is, so it’s crucial that you do your part by not falling asleep behind the wheel.