There is a common assumption that night time driving is more dangerous than during the day, and statistics from the National Safety Council are proof: Half of all fatal motor vehicle crashes happen at night, and just over 40,000 people lost their lives in such incidents in 2016. This figure represents a 4.1% increase over the same numbers from the year before. In addition, 6.8 million accident victims suffered injuries that were severe enough to require emergency or urgent treatment. Their costs, including medical expenses, lost wages, and others topped $416.2 billion. This amount does not include pain and suffering, and emotional losses.
The best way to avoid a night time driving collision is to not drive at night. However, since this may be impractical or even impossible, some tips on how to stay safe when driving at night may be helpful. If you are hurt, talk to a Maryland auto accident attorney about your right to compensation.
Proper Headlight Usage:
It is obvious that you should have your lights on when driving at night or as dusk approaches. Recent vehicle models will turn them on automatically when they sense darkness. However, many motorists overlook the importance of using high and low beams at the right times. You probably do not need the brighter option in urban areas, as they can cause visibility issues for oncoming traffic.
Defensive driving is always critical and absolutely essential when driving in darkness. Your reaction time is slower, which means you need to be driving accordingly. Plus, you should keep an eye out for other motorists who are facing the same nighttime driving challenges as you are.
Never Drive Drunk:
The dangers of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol are well-known, so it should come as no surprise that you are at higher risk when you do it at night. Visibility is even worse in low light conditions when your physical capabilities and judgment are impaired.
No Distracted Driving:
Texting and talking on the phone are hazardous activities any time of day, as are surfing the internet, taking photos, and posting on social media. Plus, you may be engaging in risky distracted driving and not even realize it. Avoid eating, drinking, grooming, and operating the radio when driving at night.
Avoid Drowsy Driving:
Darkness will naturally make you feel tired. You are vulnerable to drowsiness after a long day and monotony of some highways does not help. Play loud music, open the windows, and drink some coffee to stay alert. If you do start to feel symptoms of fatigue, pull over in a safe spot and rest for a bit.
Though night time driving may statistically be more dangerous, there are threats from negligent drivers at any time. If you were hurt in an accident that was someone else’s fault, please contact attorney Michael A. Freedman to hear more about your legal remedies. We can schedule a free consultation to review your case and answer questions about auto accidents in Baltimore County, MD.