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Lucy F, Bradford UK

Driving at Night

Many car insurance claims are filed against accidents that occur at night. Night driving is often a troubled event for people hoping to lower their insurance costs Because of the decreased visibility at night, drivers naturally become more tired when driving at night. A drowsy, disoriented driver or one under the influence of drugs or alcohol while driving at night poses a high risk to himself and other drivers. When operating your vehicle during hours of darkness, stay especially alert to potential and actual hazards and especially to drivers who may be impaired or incapacitated. Give them plenty of room and report them to law enforcement.Maintaining your car in good repair helps avoid many night driving hazards. Keep your headlights and windscreen clean. Have your lights replaced or repaired immediately if they do not work properly. Always keep your windscreen cleanser reservoir filled and your wipers working well. A coating of dust on the windscreen will reflect oncoming headlights and create additional glare that reduces your front visibility.

Common Nighttime Hazards

At night, drivers confront the same hazards as during the day, but the hazards and obstacles are harder to see. Whilst you can easily spot a pedestrian or an animal by day, by night, they are cloaked in darkness and can all but invisible. In built-up areas, you have the advantage of lighting in roads and motorways, but once in rural areas, you are surrounded by darkness interspersed with occasional spots of light.The intermittent rural lighting can often be minimal. You may encounter horses that may or may not have riders, domestic animals or wildlife, all of which pose special hazards. You can also encounter unseen dips, trees, fallen branches or steep hills with little or no notice. Local drivers are often well familiar with these roads and may drive faster and more recklessly than is safe, adding to the hazards to the unfamiliar driver. Because of that, drive more slowly in these areas than you might otherwise.When driving in unfamiliar neighbourhoods or areas at night, you can get lost or become disoriented or distracted quite easily as you attempt to navigate through new territory. Other drivers may be in the same situation as well. Pull safely to the side of the road or off the roadway to consult maps or directions or to call someone for assistance. Be aware of other drivers who may be stopping often or who turns suddenly without adequate warning. Also be aware of drivers who don’t pay attention to those slow drivers, for they are hazards too.

Driving Precautions in the Dark

The most obvious safety precaution and legal requirement whilst driving in the dark is keeping your headlights on. In well-lit areas, keep the headlights on dip to prevent dazzling and blinding other drivers. On rural or poorly lit suburban areas, change to full beam for better visibility, but lower them when approaching a well-lit area or a pedestrian, cyclist or vehicle.driving at night may require maintaining a slower speed. Always drive slowly enough to stop within the illuminated distance of your headlights. Anticipation of hazards and slower driving are crucial to driving safely at night to avoid accidents and insurance claims and to keeping your driving record clean. You deserve the extra few minutes of travel to arrive safely at your destination.

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