Several factors can affect your ability to drive safely at night. Poor night vision can be a sign of aging or a serious condition that requires treatment. If you're going on a long haul for a late summer road trip or find yourself frequently driving at night, here are some things you can do to protect yourself and others on the road after the sun goes down.
- Have an eye exam annually. You may need glasses for night driving. Use your AAA discount to purchase a pair.
- Plan to drive when you are well-rested. Some new car manufacturers offer driver drowsiness detection, which can be helpful if you drive a lot at night. If you find yourself getting sleepy on the road, pull over to a safe place and rest. Use your AAA discount to stay at a hotel overnight and start fresh in the morning.
- Have your vehicle serviced at a AAA Car Care Center to ensure all lights and signals are functioning properly so the other drivers can see you.
- Refrain from alcohol use. Even one drink can promote sleepiness and affect reaction time. Avoid alcohol altogether if you plan to be on the road.
- Maintain a safe driving distance between vehicles. Give yourself ample time to stop short if necessary.
- Avoid glare from oncoming traffic by focusing your eyes on the right edge of the road.
- Maintain windshield wiper fluid to keep your windows clean. Dirt and debris can accumulate quickly and impede your vision.
- Dim the dashboard lights. Bright lights can compromise your forward vision.
- Watch for wildlife. On dark country roads, animals are everywhere. Keep an eye out and reduce your speed.
- Use fog lights, even if it's not foggy, to see beyond the road's shoulder. Fog lights are aimed low to help the driver see the road.
There are many precautions you can take to stay safe while driving at night. Be proactive and bring your vehicle in for service at any AAA Car Care Center to keep it in optimum condition and follow the guidelines above for night driving.