Surviving Night Time Driving: The Dos and Donts
Driving at twilight can be a daunting task to new drivers who are not used to the conditions. Even the more established drivers whose eyes adjust slowly to darkness find it difficult. (We can describe 'night' as the hours between dusk and dawn). Nonetheless, you can do several things to make driving in darkness a more secure and more tolerable experience.
Reduced visibility is the biggest danger of driving during the night. Seeing other road users is harder especially before your eyes to adjust to the dimness after being in a well-lit place. Where road conditions are not exactly ideal motorists will mostly concentrate on avoiding potholes, bodabodas, rocks, pedestrians, drunkards, vehicles without tail lights and stalled vehicles– all which cause heightened strain on the driver.
Fatigue is another element; driving at night time means that you, and other road users are most likely exhausted therefore lowering response time, readiness and focus. Yes, you are awake but not alert.
Obviously it is against the law to drive at twilight without working front and back-lights – the significance of these ought to be clear; however given the high number of drivers who either drive with a 'mono-eye' headlamp or without brake-lights or faulty tail lights one is left to wonder whether these drivers have natural night vision like the Terminator.
Check that every light works and these include: headlamps, tail lights, hazard lights and indicators. You can check if they are working by requesting someone to stand in front and behind your car while you flick the different buttons from inside.
Should you be driving along a dark street, don't hesitate to turn your headlamps on full-beam; if however you sight an oncoming vehicle, cyclist or person-on-foot, you should dip your headlights your headlamps so as not to "blind" others with the glare. To avoid yourself being "blinded" by approaching vehicles, don't gaze straight into their headlamps. It's important to note that brake lights can likewise bring about the blinding effect. To avoid blinding others keep your foot off the brakes in heavy traffic jam; you can instead you the handbrake if you will be stationary for some time.
Keep in mind that you don't need to wait for peach darkness before you turn on your headlamps. If your car has Day Time Lights then these will naturally illuminate when you ignite the car. The goal is be visible by others and also to see other cars immediately they cross into your line of vision.