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Cross country road trips, truckers, and even early morning commuters can suffer from driving fatigue. Drivers who spend too long on the road or drive without adequate sleep can end up falling asleep at the wheel, and cause catastrophic consequences, especially if there is no passenger to monitor the driver's awareness. As an answer to this common problem, several companies have developed smartphone apps that help drivers stay awake and alert to help keep everyone safe on the road.

Technology to Keep You Awake While DrivingDrivia

Drivia is perfect for those who enjoy a challenge to keep themselves awake. By using trivia, Drivia keeps drivers from nodding off by asking a series of questions and using voice recognition software to keep driver’s engaged while hands free. If the driver doesn't respond or takes too long to answer a question, the app sounds an alarm with commands to stay alert, which escalate in volume and intensity.

Anti Drowse

For those who prefer an alternative to talk radio, this free app that makes various noises to keep a driver awake on the road. It acts like an alarm clock. Enter the time you start driving, and the app will make noises at certain intervals to be sure you stay awake and alert on the road.

Anti-Sleep Pilot

The Anti-Sleep Pilot app is a more sophisticated product that actually measures how far you’ve traveled and how long it’s been since you stopped for a rest. If it’s been too long, passed recommended guidelines, the app will recommend rest stops along the way. In addition to keeping track of your travel record, it gives simple alertness challenges every 10-15 minutes to measure reaction times in order to predict whether you're guilty of drowsy driving.

Other Technology Options

For drivers who don’t have a smartphone, there are a wide variety of other devices and technologies to prevent drowsy driving. One of the most popular of these products is one geared at truckers called NoNap. This device looks like a Bluetooth earpiece, but instead of making calls, it makes loud sounds if it detects signs of driver fatigue.

Some high end vehicles come equipped with anti-fatigue technologies to keep drivers safe. Attention Assist is an option available on Mercedes-Benz models which is a warning system that responds to various subtle cues caught by a variety of sensors. This system builds a profile of driver behavior and monitors actual driving for changes. Everything from acceleration to steering goes into an advanced algorithm, which helps the onboard computer determine whether it’s likely that the driver's alertness is slipping.

While there are a variety of options in the technology world, the best way to avoid fatigue is to get adequate sleep before driving, and to take a break and pull over if you feel sleepy. There are also the simple techniques used by many drivers such as chomping on a favorite snack, listening to entertaining music, or rolling down the window to keep cool air on your face while driving at night.

By Matt Reynolds - Google+
Posted 7:30 PM

Tags: safety, auto
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