Californians do not have to contend with a lot of bad weather when driving their motor vehicles. Though any part of the state can receive rain or other forms of precipitation, most days, from Redding and Sacramento all the way down to San Diego, the sun is shining and the roads are clear of sleet, ice, and snow. However, there is one natural driving condition that no California driver can always avoid: darkness.
Though drivers can plan their trips around the daylight hours, most drivers will have to get behind the wheels of their cars at some point at night. There are important safety tips that drivers can follow to maintain control of their vehicles and safety while operating after the sun has gone down. This post will discuss some of those tips, but readers are reminded that this informational post contains no legal advice.
Vehicle maintenance and safety
There are certain steps drivers can take to ready their vehicles to drive at night. They can ensure that their headlights are properly adjusted so that their beams point at the road before them. They can reduce glare within their vehicles by dimming their internal vehicle lights and ensuring that their windshields are safe and clean. Drivers can also protect their own vision by avoiding looking at oncoming headlights and operating at slower speeds so that they have more time to see obstacles in the roads before them.
Driver awareness of their own condition is an important piece of staying safe on the road. For example, a tired driver who must drive at night may be more prone to falling asleep behind the wheel without the sunlight too keep them alert. Also, practically all drivers have affected vision at night and because of this, drivers should be prepared to reduce their speeds and take more time to observe conditions around them to avoid collisions with other vehicles, animals, and other hazards.
Awareness of other drivers
A final complication that can make nighttime driving even more dangerous is the behavior of other drivers. Intoxicated driving can happen anytime, but the evening sees more drunk drivers than the daytime and night drivers may encounter dangerous drunk drivers during their evening commutes. Similarly, fatigued drivers who operate their vehicles at night may be less prepared to avoid accidents with otherwise observant and safe drivers. Driving at night takes more than just keeping one’s self awake: it involves careful observation and patient operation of one’s vehicle to anticipate the dangerous moves of other drivers.
Dangerous nighttime drivers can cause damaging nighttime motor vehicle accidents. When an accident happens, victims should remember their rights and options under the law. If they choose to litigate their claims for the recovery of their damages, they may consider speaking with personal injury lawyers about their possible legal paths to compensation.