As a truck driver, you spend hours on the road. All that time behind the wheel can be peaceful and relaxing, but you don’t want it to be too relaxing. You don’t want to fall asleep behind the wheel, after all!
Falling asleep or spacing out behind the wheel will likely lead to an accident, injuries that require the assistance of a personal injury attorney, and the possibility that you won’t be able to drive for weeks or months while you recover?
It is possible to avoid accidents, as long as you make sure you’re awake and alert behind the wheel with these tips.
Crack the Windows
If you’re looking for an easy fix, turn off the heat and crack the window. Although feeling chilly is uncomfortable, that uncomfortable feeling will help you feel more awake.
This tip works best when it’s cold outside, as the rush of cold air into the cabin is what will jolt you awake. However, cracking the window when it’s nice outside can be helpful too. Take a few deep breaths of fresh air and you may feel invigorated enough to keep going.
Listen to Upbeat Music
Listening to music can be very helpful when it comes keeping you awake, but it does matter what kind of music you listen to.
Avoid ballads and other tunes with slow beats and opt for music that’s more upbeat. Rock music, heavy metal, and pop music are all good choices, but there are some songs that are recommended if you’re looking for energizing music to listen to while you’re on the road.
NASA created a playlist to help wake up the rover that landed on Mars. It’s recommended for morning use, but it can be used by truck drivers any time of the day for an energy boost. A few tunes on this playlist include:
- “Wake Me up Before You Go-Go” by Wham!
- “The Trooper” by Iron Maiden
- “Times Like These” by the Foo Fighters
- “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen
- “Don’t Look Back” by Boston
- “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor
- “(We’re Gonna) Rock Around the Clock” by Bill Haley and the Comets
- “I Won’t Back Down” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
Listen to an Audiobook
Music can be energizing if you pick the tunes you want to sing along to, but music can easily melt into the background, even if you have the volume turned up. If you’re looking for a way to stimulate your brain without having to sing along to tunes for hour after hour, try listening to an audiobook instead.
Listening to an audiobook is just as good as reading an actual book, making it a great choice for those who like to read, but can’t behind the wheel. It’s a good choice for those who don’t like to read too, because an audiobook can pull you into the story, causing you to think about the characters and the plot, which in turn will keep you awake and keep your eyes on the road.
As a truck driver, you don’t have the opportunity to cook healthy meals. Instead, you rely on pulling over at truck stops and buying meals on the go. Unfortunately, that means a lot of greasy fast food, which will do nothing for your energy levels.
Although that cheeseburger is tempting, you should find healthier things to eat. Snack on apples, pack healthy sandwiches for the road and drink water—not pop.
Vitamins can be helpful too! Try taking supplements that contain vitamin C and vitamin B, which are both known to boost energy levels.
Pull Over and Sleep!
It’s true that you have to stick to your deadline, which means spending plenty of time behind the wheel, but sometimes you just can’t fight it. If you’re tired, it’s better to pull over and sleep than it is to power through and risk getting into an accident.
Getting a full night’s sleep is important, but if you don’t have time for a long nap, a quick catnap can be helpful too. A 20-minute nap can increase your alertness, which makes it perfect for truck drivers.
Driving a truck is less stressful than other careers because there are fewer people to deal with, but it can also be more dangerous than other careers. Make sure you’re safe behind the wheel and you get your cargo to its destination on time by following these tips to stay awake and alert while driving a truck.