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Driving at Night? Proceed With Caution to Avoid a Car Accident

Posted on in Car Accidents

Chicago car accident lawyer nighttime driving safetyRecently, on the night of July 29, 2018, six tragic, fatal injuries occurred in motor vehicle collisions throughout the city of Chicago. One accident occurred when a woman was ejected from her motorcycle. Another accident occurred after two teenagers crashed on the Far South Side; both teens were killed. The only connection among these fatal accidents is that they all occurred in darkness.

According to the National Safety Council, the risk of fatal motor vehicle collisions is three times higher at night than in the daytime. Despite the fact that far fewer drivers drive during the night that at daytime, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that approximately 49% of all traffic fatalities occur at night. If you plan to drive in hours of darkness, practice extreme caution.

Staying Safe While Driving at Night 

Driving during hours of darkness can be dangerous for a number of reasons. Here are a few simple tips that may help you and your family stay safe next time you drive at night:

  • Maximize Your Vision: While driving at night, vision is severely limited. Ensuring that you can see as much of the road as possible can be the difference between arriving at your destination safely and suffering severe, and even fatal, injuries. When possible, utilize your high beams as a means of increasing the distance you can see through the darkness. Before you drive, clean off your lights and windshield in order to increase your range of sight and avoid blurred vision. Finally, avoid looking into oncoming headlights, since even a moment of temporary blindness can lead to an accident. 
  • Slow Down: Even with the use of high-beam lights, drivers can only see approximately 500 feet in front of their vehicle during nighttime hours. Next time you drive at night, drive more slowly than you would while driving in daylight. Limited visibility means a smaller margin of error for you and other drivers on the road. Reducing your speed may cost you a few minutes on the road, but it may just save your life. 
  • Do Not Drive While Drowsy: According to recent studies by the National Safety Council, 37% of American drivers admitted to having fallen asleep while driving. Drowsy driving has become a massive issue on American roadways, causing numerous fatalities nationwide. Next time you drive at night, make sure you get between six and eight hours of sleep the night before, take rest breaks when needed, and know when it may be time to pull over and find a place to sleep. Avoiding driving while drowsy may cost you some time and money, but it could save you from falling asleep at the wheel. 
  • Watch Out For Drunk Drivers: According to the NHTSA, upwards of thirty Americans die every day due to impaired drivers. During nighttime hours, there are an increased number of inebriated drivers on the road. Next time you drive at night, be aware of the fact that drunk drivers are around. Slow down, maintain a cautious distance between yourself and other vehicles, and look out for signs of aggressive or reckless driving. Awareness of your surroundings can be the difference between life and death. 

Contact a Lake County Car Accident Attorney

At Salvi and Maher, L.L.C., our team of personal injury attorneys have years of experience helping those tragically impacted by motor vehicle collisions. If you or a loved one are involved in an auto accident, our team of Waukegan personal injury lawyers can provide you with legal guidance and help you pursue financial compensation you deserve. To set up a free consultation, call us today at 847-662-3303. 

Sources: 

https://www.nsc.org/road-safety/safety-topics/night-driving

https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/810637

http://www.fox32chicago.com/news/crime/6-people-killed-in-overnight-crashes

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