Truck drivers have long work hours and irregular sleep schedules. Staying awake or alert for long periods of time is important if the driver wants to be productive and maintain safety. That said, it’s essential for truck drivers to know some tips which will help them stay awake for longer, when that’s absolutely necessary.
Avoid contrast lights at night
The strong contrast between the bright and dark colors will make the driver feel sleepy a lot sooner. Usually, during the night, the driver’s face is illuminated by the headlights and the dashboard while sitting in the dark cabin of the truck. Such a view can prevent the driver from staying awake. One tip is to light up the cabin interior with a soft red light at night. Also, minimize the board light enough to continue seeing the indicators. It’s never recommended not to look directly at the headlights as vehicles approach, but slightly from the side.
Keep emotions under control
Discussions with a supplier, mechanical problems with the truck, or the loss of a work shift, and in general any problem or inconvenience that causes concern, discomfort, or stress, will physically and emotionally affect the driver. If you want to stay awake for longer It is advisable to keep the emotions in balance, no matter how challenging that may be.
Do not exhaust yourself too much
It is very dangerous for a driver to exert him/herself when tired. Much less wait to be completely exhausted. The more tired the driver is before finally going to rest, the less alert he will be when he wakes up. So you should not exhaust yourself too much. That’s why fast naps are an excellent option to stay awake for longer.
Decrease the temperature
Have we ever heard someone say that they love winter because they sleep better when it’s very cold? Of course not. People sleep better when the environment is warm and comfortable. It is normal that in winter, drivers raise the temperature to keep the cabin warm. However, that causes drowsiness. It is advisable to keep the temperature warm but nothing too much. This will make the driver more alert.
Turn off the radio
Music, radio programs, audiobooks can be very entertaining, but after a certain time, they are quite exhausting. The mind processes every sound it receives. As we bombard the brain with stimuli, we get tired more and more. Therefore, it is recommended that drivers keep the radio off for a certain period of time. Listening to the soft hum of the engine and the wheels on the road can keep the drivers calm and relaxed.
Turn on the radio again
However, silence can also be tiring after a while. The endless buzz of the engine and tires is relaxing, but when it is the only constant sound, it puts the driver in a trance. To avoid reaching that point, it is recommended that the driver turn on the radio again for a while and wake up a little.
Avoid consuming too much caffeine
Many people love coffee so much that they can’t survive the day without drinking a little. There is nothing wrong with having a cup of coffee, as long as it’s not in excess. Mixing different stimulants such as coffee and energy drinks is a common practice among truck drivers. However, this puts your health and performance at risk. The recommendation is simple: do not exaggerate with caffeine or stimulants.
Take a cup of coffee
While drivers should avoid too much caffeine in general, consuming it from time to time and in moderate amounts can give them the energy to continue working. Certainly, there is no replacement for a good night of rest. We all know that. But it’s a good way to get some quick freshening up when necessary.
Avoid large amounts of food
A full stomach makes the person feel sleepy. It is recommended that the drivers eat several smaller portions of food during the day, instead of a single large portion. This will make you feel better and less sleepy.
Get something to eat
The right amount of snacks at the right time are an excellent energetic stimulant for drivers. This is because the body responds well to small meals or snacks every so often.
We at Bottomley Enterprises want to remind you that there is no substitute for sleep. However, the mentioned tips are all effective ways for truck drivers to maintain high energy levels and stay awake for longer at times when this is absolutely necessary and resting is not an option. Interested in becoming a part of our team? Then feel free to fill out our driver’s application. You can also follow us on Facebook for more trucking news and updates.