Turning the clocks back this weekend can present a challenge to drivers: this is the time of the year when it gets darker earlier, presenting an additional challenge to many motorist’s commutes.
“Even with good eyesight, it can be hard to see at night,” said Theresa Podguski, AAA East Central Director of Legislative Affairs. “We recommend drivers keep their lights on high-beam in poorly lit areas, as long as there is no oncoming traffic.”
Given that you can’t turn back the clock to undo a crash that has already occurred, AAA East Central offers this additional advice to drivers to avoid a crash caused by driving in the dark:
- Dim your headlights for oncoming cars and when you come up behind a vehicle.
- When an oncoming vehicle shines light directly into your eyes, look down and to the right to avoid being temporarily blinded.
- Make sure your headlights are clean and clear. Dirty headlights make it more difficult to see.
- Make sure you have a clean windshield to avoid streaks and smudges that cause glare.
- If your vehicle is equipped, use the nighttime setting on your review mirror.
- Be aware of the dangers of drowsy driving. Get enough sleep the night before driving, especially if you are taking a long trip. If you become sleepy while driving, pull over and take a break.
In addition, children, pedestrians, joggers, walkers and bicyclists likely will continue to be outside but will be a lot less visible during the evening commute. Motorists should slow down and be extra alert, particularly in residential neighborhoods and school zones.
AAA recommends the following tips for pedestrian safety:
- See and be seen –drivers need to see you to avoid you.
- Make eye contact with drivers when crossing streets.
- Wear bright colors or reflective clothing at night.
- Carry a flashlight when walking or walking pets in the dark.
- Walk on the sidewalk. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic.
AAA East Central is a not-for-profit association with 81 local offices in Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia serving 2.7 million members. News releases are available at news.eastcentral.aaa.com. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.