Most people are aware that driving at night is more dangerous than in the daytime. However, did you know that 40% of fatal vehicle accidents occur at night – even though there is 60% less traffic on the roads than in the daytime? That statistic is a stark illustration of the increased danger when you drive at night.
One of the main reasons why night driving is more dangerous is that your ability to perceive and judge distances is greatly impaired when it’s dark outside. Other factors include rush hour traffic (which occurs in the dark during the shorter days of the year) as well as a larger number of fatigued drivers and impaired drivers on the road late at night.
In addition, your vision on the road at night can be compromised by glare from oncoming headlights – and your depth perception, peripheral vision and color recognition are reduced at night.
So what can you do to increase safety while driving at night? Following are a few simple tips that can help.
Slow Down – You need to slow down at night to compensate for reduced ability to see clearly as well as reduced stopping time.
Avoid Glare – Avert your eyes slightly so that you are not looking directly into oncoming headlights.
Dim Lights in Your Car – Dim your dashboard lights if possible and do not use interior lights inside your car when driving.
Clean Windshield – Keep your windshield clean and free of streaks, which can distort your vision.
Anti-Reflective Glasses – If you wear eyeglasses it’s a good idea to get glasses that are anti-reflective.