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This paper presents a method for detecting the early signs of fatigue/drowsiness during driving. Analysing some biological and environmental variables, it is possible to detect the loss of alertness prior to the driver falling asleep. As a result of this analysis, the system will determine if the subject is able to drive. Heart rate variability (HRV), steering-wheel grip pressure, as well as temperature difference between the inside and outside of the vehicle, make possible to estimate in an indirect way the driver's fatigue level. A hardware system has been developed to acquire and process these variables, as well as an algorithm to detect beats and calculate the HRV taking into account the others aspects mentioned before.