Many people are not through with their day once the sun sets. As winter approaches and the days gradually become shorter, nighttime driving is a part of daily life. While you may be familiar with navigating the roadways in the dark, you may not fully understand the dangers that come with driving at night. Nighttime driving is associated with certain hazards that increase your risk of becoming involved in a deadly car accident. It is critical that you are aware of these dangers so you can minimize this risk and stay safe while driving at night.
One of the most common nighttime hazards is the lack of natural light. We require light to process information and see our entire environment clearly. While the roadways may be illuminated with street lights, the areas around the road are dark and it can be difficult to see if there are hidden dangers, such as pedestrians or animals. Our response time when reacting to these hazards is also reduced at night. This is especially true for older drivers who require greater amounts of light to see.
The darkness affects peoples’ depth perception and peripheral vision. This makes it hard to judge how far away a car is and how fast it is going when turning out into traffic. The glare from oncoming headlights can also cause temporary blindness and affect our ability to drive. In addition to low light levels, there are more drunk drivers on the road at night. As a driver, it is critical that you drive undistracted and stay fully aware of everything that is going on around you so you can react to any potential dangers.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.