Driving at night presents additional challenges on top of the routine road hazards you encounter. Regardless of whether you’re driving in the city or on the open highway, it’s important to stay safe. Understanding the potential dangers of night driving will help you reduce the likelihood of a serious automobile accident.
There are several factors which make crashes more likely to happen at night. Among them are the following:
- Increased risk of driving while drowsy, due to fatigue or insufficient sleep
- Increased risk of coming into contact with a drunk driver
- Construction zone accidents due to crews working overnight
- Decreased visibility of lanes, other drivers, and road hazards
- Being in an unfamiliar area could also make driving more difficult
If you can’t reduce or eliminate the need to drive at night, try implementing these safety tips:
Keep your windshield free of dirt, streaks, and smears. Dirty windshields can distort light, causing glare and difficulty seeing. You should also make sure that any cracks in the glass that obstruct your line of sight are fixed.
Don’t look directly into the headlights of oncoming vehicles. Night drivers often have their high beams on, even in the city. Keep your eyes focused on the road and away from the light.
Make sure your headlights work so other drivers can see you. Also, make sure to them on. Many drivers forget to use their headlights entirely, endangering themselves and others.
Avoid common distractions such as cell phone use or passengers causing disruption. These and other distractions are unsafe during daylight driving. They become much worse when it gets dark.
Wear, or get, corrective lenses if you need them. Far too many drivers neglect to wear glasses or contacts. And many more don’t bother to have their eyes checked to see if they need them.
Part of driving safe is taking steps which protect other drivers as well. For example, while other drivers can be careless with their high beams, you should be careful with yours. Indiscriminately using them at all times can cause someone else to have an accident. In addition, getting enough rest for long, overnight commutes is common sense and protects everyone. You simply should not be on the road if you’re exhausted from work or have had too little sleep.
Motorists can also endanger others when something goes wrong with their vehicles. If you experience an emergency, such as an imminent break down, try to get to the shoulder or emergency lane. Use your hazard lights and other equipment to alert other vehicles, and call for assistance if you have a phone. Accidents are more likely to happen when vehicles are not moved out of the path of traffic, especially at night.
Perhaps one of the best things you can do is exercise more overall caution in your night time driving. You should compensate for dark driving conditions by adjusting your speed and distance from other vehicles. Everyone’s visibility is a little worse at night, and this can decrease your reaction time. Give yourself enough room and follow all traffic signs and laws.
If You’re Involved in a Night Time Automobile Accident, an Attorney Can Help
Following these and other safety tips is a good way to reduce the probability of being in an accident. But even the best and most cautious motorists cannot account for the actions of others. Negligence still happens, and people still get hurt. If you’ve been injured in an automobile accident, you need legal representation. The car accident attorneys at Schneider Hammers have extensive experience with automobile accidents of all types. Give us a call today to speak with our team at Schneider Hammers.