Half of all traffic deaths occur at night despite the fact that nighttime driving accounts for just 25 percent of all hours driven, according to the National Safety Council (NSC). Driving in the dark is simply more dangerous, even if you’re driving on familiar roads. With winter approaching and the days getting shorter, now is a good time for a reminder about the dangers of night driving.
What Makes Driving at Night So Dangerous?
The most obvious nighttime driving danger is the simple fact that darkness means reduced visibility. The NSC says nighttime visibility is usually about 500 feet maximum, even if you drive with high beams on. That lack of visibility translates into less time to notice and react to hazards.
Age tends to make the visibility issue even worse. A 50-year-old’s eyes can require twice as much light to see as well as a 30-year-old can. When you drive in the dark, give your eyes some help by making sure your windshield and headlights are clean and clear. And, drive slower than you would in the daytime.
Glare caused by oncoming traffic is another night driving hazard. In Europe, cars have been equipped with technology called adaptive driving beams since 2012. These headlights reduce glare without sacrificing visibility. But in the U.S., not a single vehicle can be purchased with this technology. To help fight glare, try to look toward the edge of the road when meeting oncoming traffic.
Increased tiredness is another danger related to driving at night or in the early morning before the sun comes up. Winter commutes often happen at least partially in darkness, so there are many people who are behind the wheel while they’re either still trying to wake up or trying to stay awake after a long work day. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep so you can be alert whenever you need to drive in the dark.
Finally, driving at night often means you’ll be on the road at the same time as people who have been drinking. The NSC says drunk driving is at its peak on weekends between midnight and 3 a.m., which is around bar closing time in many states.
Personal Injury Claims Stemming From Nighttime Accidents
When someone gets hurt in a motor vehicle accident at night and wants to pursue a legal claim, the process is the same as for crashes that happen during the day. You’ll want to retain an experienced Texas auto accident lawyer to handle the situation and maximize the compensation you receive. Your attorney can handle the insurance issues and any potential personal injury lawsuit on your behalf while you focus on recovering.
Have a Personal Injury Attorney on Your Side
The lawyers of Ted B. Lyon & Associates represent clients injured in motor vehicle crashes in Dallas and across East Texas, no matter what time of day or night. You can call us 24/7 at 877-Ted-Lyon / 877-833-5966 or contact us online to arrange a no-cost consultation with one of our experienced injury attorneys.