According to research done by the National Safety Council, the risk of being involved in a fatal traffic accident is three times greater at night than it is during the day. Many factors contribute to this added risk of driving at night, including poor night vision, fatigue, increased traffic due to rush hour, driver fatigue, and drivers under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Right now we are under Daylight Savings Time so a greater number of drivers will find themselves spending more time on the road in the dark. Being in the dark can compromise all sorts of things that we normally take for granted, such as color recognition, peripheral vision, and depth perception. Drivers can also be temporarily blinded from the glare of headlights from an oncoming truck or car.
Best Ways to Counteract the Darkness
Even when driving with the top of the line hi-beams on, the best nighttime visibility is still limited to around 500 feet in front of your vehicle. This means that you have less time to react to anything that you may see in the roadway or off to the side, especially if you are driving at a higher than average speed.
Ways to Stay Safe:
- Make certain that your headlights are clean and angled correctly
- Dim the lights across your dashboard
- Drive at a slower speed to make up for your reduced visibility and your decreased stopping time
- Make sure that your front and rear windshields and both side view mirrors are clean and streak-free
- Look away from oncoming lights by keeping your eyes on the line that marks the outside edge of your lane
A recent poll that was conducted by the National Sleep Foundation revealed that 60% of all adults have operated a motor vehicle when they knew they were too tired to safely do so.103 million people (roughly 37%), have actually fallen asleep while behind the wheel. Out of those 103 million, 13% admitted to falling asleep while driving approximately once a month! 4% of the drivers that were polled admitted that they have caused a collision by nodding off while they were driving. Driver fatigue doesn’t happen only on long road trips either. Shift work, long work hours, lack of quality sleep, and sleeping disorders are all contributing factors when it comes to the number of drivers on the road that are too tired to safely operate a motor vehicle. Missing out on just two hours of quality sleep impairs your driving ability just as much as if you had drunk three beers before getting behind the wheel. Fatigued drivers are overall three times more likely to end up being in some kind of auto accident.
While the average motorist only does about 25% of their overall driving at night, 50% of all traffic-related fatalities also occur at night. Driving at night comes with an increased risk of danger, no matter how familiar the road or how close to home we may be. If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident that occurred at night, then it is important to determine the exact cause of that accident to determine if you are qualified to collect financial compensation for the losses that you have sustained. If you would like to take part in a free consultation regarding the specifics of your case, then don’t hesitate to call the McGuire Law Firm and speak with one of our qualified attorneys. We have an exceptional track record when it comes to our personal injury cases. Call us today at (405) 513-5658 and find out what we can do for you.