Driving at night is a common activity that you and many others carry out. While you may feel confident in your driving abilities, you may want to remember that driving after dark presents more dangers for any driver than when driving during the day. Just the lack of visibility can cause a number of hazards.
Of course, you likely cannot limit your driving to daylight hours only, and you probably do not want to do that either. Still, you also do not want to end up causing an accident because you did not inform yourself of the risks of night driving and the ways that you could help yourself be safe while on the road after dark.
Fortunately, you can help yourself and others by taking a few simple steps before heading out on the road and while driving. Some of those steps include the following:
- Staying alert: If you feel even slightly sleepy, you should not get behind the wheel at night. Fatigued driving is a common cause of serious car accidents.
- Driving on highways: You may prefer to take back roads rather than highways when possible, but because two-lane roads typically have less lighting and more curves and hills, you face more risks.
- Cleaning your view: Making sure that your windshield and headlights are clean and free of damage can help ensure that your line of sight stays bright and clear.
- Adjusting your headlights: In addition to making sure your lights are clean, you should also ensure that they are at the correct angle for optimal illumination, and also remember to use your high beams in particularly dark areas.
- Adjusting your inside lights: You may not think much about the brightness of your dashboard lights, but if they are too bright, looking at the dash and then back at the dark road could cause vision issues and disorientation.
- Watching for animals: Deer, dogs, raccoons and any number of other animals could dart in front of your vehicle, and at night, it is even more important to stay on the lookout for that hazard.
You want to give yourself every opportunity to make it home safely, and following these and other safety tips for driving at night may help you in that endeavor. Unfortunately, another driver may not act as cautious and may drive too quickly, succumb to distraction or carry out any number of dangerous behaviors that leads to a crash. If you suffer serious injuries in a nighttime crash, you may want to consider your options for seeking compensation.