There are many aspects that make driving at night especially dangerous, such as reduced visibility, dazzling lights, sleepiness, and fatigue, among others. As we explained on a previous post of the blog, long trips can be quite challenging, but if you add night time to the equation, things get even more complicated.
For that reason, our advice would be to avoid long distance trips at night as far as possible. However, if you can’t help it, here are some useful tips to avoid any problems while driving after dark.
1. Check your lights before starting your journey
In the dark, dioptres increase. Lights become blurred and distances can be misleading. That’s why you should make sure that all the lights of your vehicle work correctly.
Remember that both front and rear lights should be working properly, since the goal is to be able to see and be seen in the dark, so you might want to check all the lights before your trip and substitute them in case they are not working properly.
To do so, wait until night time and park your car in an even surface, preferably facing a wall, which will allow you to see if the lights are bright enough. Then switch the headlights on and walk around the car to check if both the front and the rear lights are working. If you have an issue with your headlights, visit your local Tayaria outlet using our dealer locator tool.
2. Beware of oncoming vehicles and traffic lights
In order to avoid being dazzled, never look directly at the glare from the headlights of other cars, as they can impair your vision for a few seconds, which can lead to swerving, and eventually cause an accident.
In case you are suddenly dazzled, try to look away, preferably at the road, and follow the white line marking the edge to keep track of your position. If that doesn’t work and you are still dazzled, slow down but not abruptly, since the vehicles behind you won’t have enough time to react, leading to a rear-end collision.
3. Avoid driving at high speeds
When driving at night, it is particularly difficult to see what is ahead of you, even with the lights on. Therefore, we recommend driving at a lower speed in order to prevent any unforeseen events such as suddenly braking, a vehicle broken down on the hard shoulder, or another car coming in the opposite direction. Also, you might realise that your reaction times are slower at night, so it is always convenient to slow down, so you can easily prevent any of these events or even stop if you need to.
4. Don´t drive at night if you’re already tired
Driving while you’re tired or sleepy is always dangerous, but when the night comes, the feelings of fatigue may intensify. If you begin to feel sleepy while driving at night, don’t wait until you’re completely exhausted. Instead, try to look for a place to spend the night and continue your journey the next day, or maybe make arrangements for someone else to take the wheel if you’re not travelling alone. Some drivers try to combat fatigue by drinking coffee or energy drinks, but that may actually be counterproductive.
5. Avoid caffeinated drinks
As we mentioned before, drinking stimulant beverages might seem like a good idea to avoid falling asleep while driving. However, they can have a rebound effect in your system, leading to fatigue after the caffeine leaves your system, so you may end up feeling more tired and even fall asleep at the wheel.
Driving at night can be quite challenging, that’s why it is so important to take the necessary precautions to keep you and other drivers safe. Remember besides our driving tips, you can check in at any Tayaria workshop to give your vehicle a good health check.