Driving at night is more dangerous for many reasons, and it increases your chances of getting into a car accident. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that although there is less traffic on the roads during nighttime hours, almost half of car accident fatalities in the U.S. occur at night. Having a fatal crash at night is three times greater than during daylight hours.
The most significant factor in nighttime accidents is reduced visibility. Even when using high beams, a driver can only see about 500 feet in front of the vehicle, reducing their time to react to an obstacle outside this range. Generally, it is more difficult to focus on objects in dim light and when the lighting changes, such as when the bright headlights of an oncoming car disappear and leave you in darkness again.
Drowsy driving is also a danger to those out on the roads at night. Your internal clock is programmed for sleeping at night, so anyone out driving in the dark is fighting the instinct to sleep. Many people do not realize that drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving. Studies have proven that drowsy drivers have slowed reaction times and impaired judgment, similar to drunk drivers.
Impaired driving incidents increase at night when people return home from bars, clubs, or parties. For this reason, many drunk driving accidents happen at night.
Speeding is dangerous at any time of day, but it can be deadlier at nighttime with reduced visibility. A speeding driver has less time to react to an emergency and is a danger to everyone on the road around them.
Tips for Avoiding Nighttime Accidents
It is always better to limit your driving to daytime hours when visibility is best, but that is not always possible. If you must be out on the roads at night, keep these tips in mind to reduce your chances of getting in an accident:
- Keep your vehicle in good shape. A clean windshield and mirrors can significantly reduce glare and increase visibility. Ensure your wiper blades are in good working order and replace them if the rubber is worn. Clean your headlights and taillights to see, and so others can see you. Check the angle of your headlights to ensure you are getting the best light on the road and that your vehicle is not blinding other drivers.
- Drive the speed limit. The posted limit has been determined to be the safest speed for the conditions of that road. If weather conditions are poor, adjust your speed accordingly and slow down. You should also slow down if you are unfamiliar with the area. Always leave enough time to get to your destination so that you are not under pressure to hurry. The few minutes you might save are not worth increasing the likelihood of an accident.
- Never drive while tired. Take frequent breaks, have a caffeinated drink, and pull over and rest before continuing your trip if you cannot shake your drowsiness.
Egg Harbor Township Car Accident Lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm Fight for Those Who Have Been Injured in Nighttime Car Accidents
If you have been seriously injured in a nighttime car accident, one of our knowledgeable Egg Harbor Township car accident lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm can help. Call us at 609-926-3300 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Located in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey, we serve clients across South Jersey, including Atlantic City, Linwood, Galloway Township, Cape May, Vineland, Millville, Bridgeton, Ocean City, and Woodbury.