Driving at night is riskier than driving during the day even if you’re taking a route you know well. According to the National Safety Council, even though people only do a quarter of their driving at night, this is when 50 percent of traffic deaths occur. It is important for all drivers in Alabama to be aware of the dangers of night driving. It’s also crucial that you know how to drive safely when it’s dark. You won’t be able to control the actions of other motorists, but you can reduce the likelihood that you’re the one causing an accident. If you are involved in a wreck, you should contact our Montgomery car accident attorneys right away.
Why Night is the Most Dangerous Time to Drive
Some people assume that it’s dangerous to drive at night simply because it’s dark. It is true that drivers often have difficulty with night vision, especially as they get older. Some roads are also poorly lit. However, there are other considerations. For example, people on the road at night are often fatigued. Whether they worked a long shift, didn’t sleep well the night before, or have a sleep disorder, fatigued drivers can fall asleep behind the wheel. Drowsy driving doesn’t get much attention but it’s just as dangerous as drunk driving.
Roadways aren’t only dangerous late at night. It can also be risky to drive when it’s dark during the evening rush hour. The roads will be crowded, and frustrated drivers will be eager to get home. They may dart from one lane to the other, go into autopilot, or tailgate, posing a danger for everyone else.
Another night-time concern is driver impairment. Many are under the influence of alcohol while others are affected by illegal drugs or prescription medication. You’re more likely to find impaired drivers on the road between midnight and 3 a.m. during the weekend. If you’re out and about at this time, you need to be very careful. In the event that you get involved in a crash, you’ll need to contact an Alabama car accident lawyer so you can seek compensation for your injuries.
Tips for Driving Safely at Night
To improve the likelihood that you’ll make it to your destination safely you should:
- Ensure headlights and windshields are clean. You don’t want to be blinded by headlight glare because your windshield is dirty. Always clean the inside and outside of your windshield before you drive at night. Also, make sure your headlights are clean so you can clearly see the road ahead of you.
- Avoid tailgating. Reduced visibility can make it difficult to see vehicles in front of you. Use your headlights to estimate the distance between you and the next vehicle and make sure you’re at a safe distance. Otherwise, a rear-end collision could result.
- Slow down. Many accidents occur because one or more drivers are speeding. If you’re traveling above the speed limit or simply too fast for the road conditions, it’ll be harder to react if something unexpected happens. Another driver may change lanes suddenly or pull out in front of you. A pedestrian may cross the road outside of a crosswalk. If you’re going too fast, you may not be able to avoid a collision.
- Stay focused. All of your attention needs to be on the road and your hands need to be on the steering wheel. As far as possible, avoid using your cellphone or GPS device and don’t eat, drink or fiddle with the radio. Whenever you take your attention off the road, you increase your chances of getting involved in an accident.
- Avoid driving when you’re sleepy or tired. It’s easy to fall asleep behind the wheel. If you didn’t get enough rest or it’s the time you would usually be sleeping, try to stay off the road if you don’t feel alert.
- Don’t drink and drive. This applies at any time of the day or night. However, given the increased risks linked to night driving, you should never consume alcohol and then get behind the wheel. Both your cognition and your vision will be impaired and your reaction times will be slower.
Call The Vance Law Firm for Help If You Get Involved in an Accident
If you were hurt in a collision at night, you may be entitled to compensation. If the driver who hit you was tired, distracted, drunk or otherwise negligent, our vehicular accident attorneys can help you to recover damages. We’ll fight for you and ensure the at-fault party is held accountable. Call us today to schedule a free consultation and get an expert legal opinion.