Even though the days are longer during the summer, that doesn’t mean driving at night gets any less dangerous. There are several hazards that coming with being out on the road after nightfall. These hazards include tiredness, less light to see by, difficulty seeing the road, and busy traffic. If you’re a trucker or professional driver of any kind, driving at night can be especially dangerous due to these hostile conditions. Stay safe out there with this helpful information about the potential dangers of driving at night.
The first potential danger of driving at night is the risk of tiredness. Driving while tired is never a good idea, and yet many adults admit to driving while deprived of sleep. A poll conducted by the National Sleep Foundation found that 60% of adults have actually hit the road while they were impaired by tiredness. Another 37% of adults confessed in the poll that have actually fallen asleep while behind the wheel of their vehicles. There are several possible causes of this – not getting enough rest while sleeping, working too long, and possible disturbed sleeping patterns. The most frequent windows of time in which crashes happen overlap with times when drivers are most likely to be the most tired. These hours fall between 4 to 6 am, midnight to 2 in the morning, and in the afternoon, 2 to 4 pm.
Once the sun goes down, it gets much harder to see everything around you. Avoid staring into headlights of other cars – the sudden flare of light can blind you for a few moments, enough time for a crash or other accident to occur. Other vision-related problems brought on by less light include trouble perceiving distance and depth, comprehending colors, and impaired peripheral vision. In order to make it easier to see after dark, consider taking some of the following steps:
- Clean up your headlights
- Make sure your windshield is clean
- Acquire anti-reflective lenses for your eyeglasses
- Drive at slower speeds to account for the difficulty of seeing and reacting to your surroundings at night
Difficulty Seeing the Road
Along with the lack of light affecting your ability to see, you will also have contend with seeing at night. As we get older, our ability to see at night decreases, making driving at night even more difficult and dangerous. Conditions such as cataracts and diseases are more likely to affect older drivers. How can you improve your ability to see when driving at night, despite the difficulty in seeing the road?
- Slow down
- Have your vision regularly examined
- Attempt to only drive during the daytime
- Avoid taking drugs that can impair your ability to operate any type of vehicle
Busy traffic is a nuisance at any time of day. Unfortunately, there are certain times during a typical day in which busy traffic is at its peak. This peak time for traffic is commonly known as rush hour, which falls between the hours of 4-7 pm. Everyone is anxious to get home, so follow these safety tips if you’re caught in busy traffic:
- Drive cautiously
- Keep to your lane
- Avoid possible distractions
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