There is a reason why the Department of Motor Vehicles requires motorists to complete several hours of night-time driving before conferring a provisional license. More than half of all automobile accidents happen at night, even though roads are less congested at that time. Now that the days are getting darker and many families are planning long road trips for the festivities ahead, The Insurance Center would like to share tips that can help you navigate the roads more safely.
“Impaired vision has been attributed to the cause of many automobile accidents, and it is especially true for accidents that occur at night,” said Robert J. Sammon, President of The Insurance Center. “Motorists can significantly reduce their odds of being involved in an automobile accident by simply taking precautions that improve road visibility.”
Statistics from the National Safety Council also suggest that experienced drivers and younger drivers are both at risk of being involved in an accident during their night-time driving routines. The Council states that motorists over 50-years-old need twice as much light to enter their eye in order to see as well as a 30-year-old. And younger drivers’ inexperience on the road and lifestyle may be to blame for their risk.
To help motorists drive safely in the dark, The Insurance Center encourages you to review our tip sheet of proven strategies that can help you reduce your odds of being involved in an accident.
Turn on Your Headlights at Dusk and Dawn
Motorists should have their lights turned on in the hours before dawn and at dusk to help other drivers see you.
Clean Foggy or Cloudy Headlights
Foggy or cloudy headlights reduce the amount of light that brightens the road. You can clean that fog with a DIY headlight restoration kit or by ordering a headlight detail.
Wipe Down Smears from the Windshield
Streaks across your windshield can obstruct your view and can cause you to see glare in those spots. Wipe down your windshield thoroughly, and use newspapers to remove tough smears.
Consider Buying Anti-Reflective Glasses
If you wear glasses, you may want to consider buying anti-reflective glasses that are designed to reduce the amount of glare you see from lights. These lenses also help prevent eyestrain.
Make Sure Your Taillights are Functioning Properly
In especially dark areas, other motorists may not even see you when you come to a complete stop if your taillights are not working.
Dim Your Dashboard Lights
Dimming your dashboard lights can reduce distractions, and allow you to remain focused on the road.
Avert Your Eyes from the Lights of Oncoming Traffic
High beam lights or even regular headlights from oncoming traffic could temporarily blind parts of your vision. You can prevent this from happening by keeping your eyes fixed on the road ahead.
Keep Your Eyes Moving
Moving your eyes every couple of seconds can improve a motorists’ peripheral and central vision. This action can also help you stay alert of your surroundings.
Driving at night does not have to be intimidating if you keep these tips in mind. The Insurance Center encourages motorists to drive with extra caution during these dark days to help make sure you can enjoy the upcoming holidays to the fullest. If you are interested in learning other ways you can protect your family, speak with an Insurance Center agent at 603.542.2551.