The National Safety Council published the results of an official poll, which states that 37% of adults have fallen asleep behind the wheel of a moving vehicle. According to the same publication, roughly 100,000 reported crashes occurred as a result of driver fatigue. Driving while exhausted is no joke, and it can have serious implications on your safety and the safety of other drivers.
Of course, fatigue is not the only danger of nighttime driving. There are numerous hazards to be aware of, including limited vision, nocturnal animals, and an increase in impaired drivers. Read on for a list of practical tips to avoid a collision while driving at night.
• Slow Down. With such limited visibility, it’s wise to slow down and drive below the posted speed limit. This will help as you go around curves and approach other cars traveling in the opposite direction.
• Use High Beams Correctly. The high beams on your vehicle are meant to be used in dark, unlit areas. They’re particularly useful on country roads where there are no streetlights or building lights. Be sure to disengage your high beams when approaching an oncoming car to avoid blinding the driver, and never use your high beams when driving directly behind another vehicle.
• Fend Off Fatigue. Fatigue happens to everyone, especially at night. If you’re in the car and you don’t feel safe, there’s absolutely no shame in pulling off the road and taking a quick stretch break. You may even decide to call it quits for the night. But if you choose to stay in the car, it may help to turn on the radio, open the windows, or even talk to yourself to keep your mind engaged.
• Drive Defensively. Defensive driving is important all the time, but it’s especially critical at night. Observe all traffic signs, be very cautious when approaching intersections, and keep an eye out for other drivers in your rearview and sideview mirrors.
• Look Out for Animals. Some animals are out and active at night. Watch for animals crossing the road, and be on the lookout for those hovering near the edge. You never know when a deer may dart out in front of your car.
Driving at night can be hazardous, even for more experienced drivers. If you’re the victim of a collision that was not your fault, then you may be entitled to compensation for loss and damage. Contact our team of attorneys here at Wayne Hardee Law to help you determine your next steps. We look forward to working for you!