Have Trouble Driving Late at Night? 8 Tips to Help
Though most people only do one-quarter of their driving at night, 50% of traffic deaths happen at night.
It can be anxiety-inducing knowing you have to take a late-night drive, but there are things you can do to make it easier and safer. Keep reading below to learn a few tips on driving late at night.
- Fight Fatigue
When you get sleepy, you are less likely to drive safely. The more tired you become, the less alert you become. Something simple that you would notice in the daytime you may miss during the night, especially if you haven’t had any rest.
To avoid this, do everything you can to keep yourself alert and on guard. Drink some caffeine, pull over to take a break, or stop driving for the night.
You can also try listening to music, rolling down your windows, or talking to yourself or someone else. However, do not push it too far, and stop if you think you need to give your eyes and mind some rest.
- Be Extra Defensive
Driving late at night requires you to be extra defensive and aware. You are more likely to deal with drivers that have been drinking, as well as other drivers that may be tired.
This means more carelessness on the road, which makes it much more likely for crashes to happen. It can be stressful to drive late at night, but if you know that you are on high alert, you can have peace of mind knowing that you will be more likely to avoid accidents.
- Clean Your Windshield
Poor visibility is one of the most common reasons that driving late at night is difficult. Whether you wear glasses or not, the darkness mixed with oncoming headlights can create a glare that makes driving extra strenuous.
You can avoid this by ensuring you clean your windshield regularly. Dirty windshields can scatter light, which increases the glare, making your eyes work even harder.
You should also regularly clean your headlights to know you are getting optimal light and aren’t causing issues for other drivers.
- Stay Slow
Whether you’re making a long trip and need to drive overnight or it’s your job and you do it daily, staying slow is essential for road safety.
When it’s late at night, you automatically have lower visibility than you do during the day. That means that you should not be going as fast as you would if it were daylight.
You may also have slower reaction times if you are tired, so it’s wise to give yourself extra room if you do end up needing to slam on your brakes.
Take it slow, no matter if you are driving on an empty back road or large highway. You never know what will come your way, and driving slow will keep you prepared for anything.
- Avoid Two-Lane Highways
While this is not always possible, avoiding two-lane highways can make driving late at night a bit easier. This is due to oncoming traffic creating more glare, as well as there being lower light overall.
Two-lane highways also usually have more hills and curves than an expressway, so if you can take another route during the darkest hours, it is highly recommended to ensure driver safety.
- Use Your High Beams When Appropriate
High beams are a great tool to use when searching for safety tips. Many people forget to use them, but they can give you much more visibility, especially if you are in a rural area or a back road where there aren’t many street lights.
However, they can’t be used in high traffic areas or when you’re behind another car. Make sure you turn them off if another vehicle approaches, as you can temporarily blind them with your high beams.
- Change Your Inside Lighting
Your inside lighting can affect your vision when driving, especially if they are too bright. Make sure all of your essential lights are visible but not too bright or distracting.
You can also use your visors to block out streetlighting that causes glare. Many newer cars also have the option to dim your mirrors, so it reduces the harshness of reflected light.
- Watch for Wildlife
If you want to avoid your car insurance premium going up, you want to be watchful for wildlife, as this is one of the most common causes of accidents late at night.
Depending on where you live, you can have different animals to look for, but deer are the most common. Your high beams and headlights can help you see the animal’s eyes, so if you do, slowing down and stopping is the safest way to avoid a collision.
Do not try to swerve and miss the animal, as they may jump and hit you anyway.
And, if you do find yourself in an accident from late-night driving, you can always call a car accident lawyer to help you through it.
Always Be Careful When Driving Late at Night
Driving late at night is often unavoidable, but doing it safely is not. Make sure to follow these tips to ensure you arrive at your destination safely and avoid any accidents that could occur.
It is essential that you stay as alert as possible and take every precaution you can, such as using your high beams and driving slow, no matter how fast you want to get where you are going.
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