Driving After Dark
With the onset of winter additional challenges arise. The most serious one is a reduction in visibility brought about by the early setting of the sun in the evening and late sunrises. Winter driving also brings many other challenges, one of which is that drivers spend more time driving at night.
After the sun goes down, a driver’s depth perception, colour recognition and peripheral vision are all compromised. Additionally, drivers are more likely to share the road with impaired and fatigued drivers, especially on many long-distance routes.
Another factor worth remembering is the neglect of the road worthiness of many vehicles, partially due to the worsening economy. Part of this neglect is also a vehicle’s lighting and, if you combine this with dirty windscreens, it considerably reduces visibility.
In the first world, reports say that three times as many crashes occur at night. This is some indication of its latent dangers.
Here are some nighttime driving tips from MasterDrive which we trust will make the journey somewhat safer:
- Set your headlights correctly and also ensure they are clean.
- Many dashboards have the option of dimming the instrument lights. If so, dim them to improve visibility.
- Do not look directly at oncoming lights. Look to the left of the road as you will be able to see the side of the road which will help you orientate yourself.
- If you wear glasses, make sure they are anti-reflective and clean.
- Make sure the windscreen is clean – it’s amazing how much strain a dirty screen puts on the eyes.
- Slow down to compensate for limited visibility and reduced stopping time.
The video link below offers some practical tips on ensuring that you do not ‘overdrive’ your headlights at night.
Till next time -exercise caution when driving at night.
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