Driving Risks During Winter:
Driving in the dark & during low light such as sunrise or sunset.
We’re getting closer to December, which means days are shorter, and we spend more time driving in the dark that we used to during the summer. Waking up is bit harder in the morning, and most of us would prefer driving to work after the sunrise, instead of driving in the dark. Besides the matter of preference, however, it’s a matter of safety as well. Driving in the dark or dusk is also riskier than driving during daylight.
Here are some tips for safer night driving:
- Keep windows clean to avoid increased glare and condensation.
- Don’t dazzle others – dip your lights when faced with another road user.
- Help drivers see you in twilight by turning your headlights on before sunset and keeping them on for an hour after sunrise.
- Have your eyes checked regularly for problems which can affect your night vision.
- Be aware that other road users may behave erratically, so be prepared to give them more space.
- Watch out for pedestrians, especially near bars and clubs around closing time.
- Allow more time for your own journey, so you’re not driving under pressure.
- If you can, dim your dashboard lights and reduce reflections and avoid reducing your night vision.
Make sure all your exterior lights are clean and working properly and keep your interior lights turned off. When approaching a vehicle at night, its proper etiquette to dim your headlights. If you do not dim your lights, you could cause the other driver to be blinded by the light and have a crash. If the vehicle is coming towards you, your vehicle could be involved as well. Also, if you dim your lights the other driver is likely to do the same. If this does not happen, you should keep your lights on low beam anyway. If you do not, you are risking more than possibly blinding the other driver. You are endangering yourself as well.
Do you get sleepier during darker hours?
Another danger of driving in the dark is that you could be sleepy… Drowsy driving is the second leading cause of deadly crashes, behind drunk driving. Have you ever heard of the term Micro Sleep? Watch this short video to learn about it: https://youtu.be/JwCnJZyU70M?t=42
Did you know that 37% of drivers admitted to falling asleep at least once behind the wheel? Here are some tips on how to stay awake while driving: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwpl9dRwKOg