Travel safety tips when driving at night

Friday, 19 June 2020

Driving at night is inevitable in a lot of situations, especially if vehicle traffic is heavy.

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Driving at night is inevitable in a lot of situations, especially if vehicle traffic is heavy. In fact, it can be your best option to avoid the chaos of congested streets during rush hour when office workers are in a mad dash to get to their homes fast.

Practical safety tips to remember when driving a vehicle overnight
Photo courtesy of pexels.com

Travel safety tips when driving at night




    On some occasions, particularly when you are traveling to a far off location and you are targeting to get there on a shorter period of time on quieter roads, driving overnight is your best option. However, it can be a challenge even the most experienced and confident of drivers.

    The challenges of driving when it is dark


    It becomes a whole different story though when you are not too confident and inexperienced when it comes to driving at night. Understandably, it is easy to feel overwhelmed and be gripped with a complete sense of dread whilst your visibility is severely reduced.

    When you are driving late at night, there is still glare from other car lights even though sparse, plus it is difficult to see what’s coming up ahead on dimly-lit roads. 

    Things to remember when driving at night


    Nevertheless, if you are traveling to the airport because you have an early flight to catch, or you are driving to a hotel or next travel destination, then driving at night is something that you have to get a good grasp soon and fast.

    As such, here are some safety tips to keep in mind when driving at night. Knowing these would help keep your mind at ease and give you a boost of confidence when you have to drive overnight.

    1. Do not drive when you are tired


    Make sure that you are well-rested when you know that you will have to hit the road at night. Driving whilst tired is incredibly dangerous and is a leading cause of car accidents, injuries and fatalities on the roads. In cases when you get involved in a road mishap, you may always consult a Carencro personal injury lawyer to help you out with your predicament. 

    Do not put yourself or other road users in danger by not driving when you are fatigued. In situations when you feel that your eyes are begging for a little sleep or when you can't recall where you have been driving the last few kilometers, pull over in a safe curb and rest before continuing your journey.

    2. Make sure that you have enough gas when you set out to drive


    Most car owners have made it part of their routine to regularly check their gas before heading out to their destinations. After all, it can cause a lot of stress and headaches to be confronted with an empty gas tank in the dark of night and with no nearby gas station in sight. As such, make sure to refuel your car especially if you are driving to an unfamiliar place at night.

    3. Have your vehicle checked if you are going on a long distance drive


    Before you set out on a long distance drive, make sure that your vehicle is in a good condition and that it can handle the lengthy trip. Have your trusty mechanic fine tune your car, check its brakes, and inspect the wheels. Also ensure that you have a spare tire and tools on hand in case emergency strikes. 

    4. Do not dazzle other road users


    Be considerate on the road at all times. There is nothing more annoying than an inconsiderate driver who is travelling with their full beams on and dazzling other road users. This kind of behavior can cause other drivers to swerve or even drift into the wrong side of the road, or even hit another vehicle. Always dip your lights in a good distance before passing another vehicle to avoid road accidents.

    5. Dim all sources of light in your dashboard


    When you are driving at night, ensure that there is not too much bright light on your dashboard. Also adjust the glare from your GPS as well as your smartphone. Turning down the brightness of all the lights in your vehicle is a good way to prevent dazzling yourself and reducing your view.

    6. Aside from your fellow drivers, be also wary of other road users


    It goes without saying that you should be doing this at any time of the day, but you should be extra careful and vigilant at night.

    Roads are not only for vehicles. You will be surprised to find out that roads, especially those in unfamiliar places of the countryside, can be filled with unexpected users. There are pedestrians, dog walkers, cyclists, and motorcyclists who are harder to spot at night, especially if they are not wearing high visibility clothing. Aside from these, do keep your eyes filled for animals that might be innocently crossing the road.

    7. Be on the lookout for other holiday makers


    This is especially true if you are driving through tourist hotspots. Always be wary of partygoers around pubs, clubs,and restaurants. It is easy to keep your guard down without you noticing it when you are having a good time and have already had a few drinks. Thus, be on the lookout for these people who might not be aware that they are already dangerously close to the road.

    If you are near a kids’ club or children’s play parks, be very careful still because there might still be parents who are taking a walk with their children even on nigh time.

    8. Keep a good distance from other vehicles


    Keep your distance from the vehicle in front of you at any given time. However, since the surroundings look much different when it is dark, you should all the more give the car in front of you a little extra room at night. Your reaction time will be dramatically reduced in the dark, so allow yourself more time to react by increasing the distance between you and the car in front.

    9. Bring light snacks and non-alcoholic drinks


    Make sure that you are not hungry when you are on a long overnight drive. Hunger can stress you out and make you lose your concentration on the road, which may eventually lead to accidents. Thus, bring with you light snacks such as biscuits and fruits, or even a sandwich.

    Also make sure that you have a bottle of water or juice, or coffee in a thermal flask. If you must make a stopover to eat, just do so. This will also allow you some rest and clear your mind so that you are ready to face the road ahead again.

    10. Do not forget your medicine and first aid kit


    Bring with you a medicine and first aid kit when you are driving at night. A sudden attack of headache can actually drain you of your energy when you are driving. An unexpected stomach-ache or a bout of diarrhea can disrupt your concentration.

    Ensure that you have the basic pain relief medicines in your bag when you are traveling. If you are taking maintenance medicine, it is all the more imperative to have these with you on hand.

    Epilogue


    Driving at night, whether you do it on a regular basis or it is your first time to do so, requires a lot of concentration to ensure your own safety as well as that of other drivers. 

    Vehicle safety tips when you are driving at night
    Photo courtesy of pexels.com

    Ultimately, the goal is for you to reach your destination safe and sound that is why you have to be well-prepared so that you will not lose your concentration while on the road. 

    Thus, make sure that you have plenty of rest, you are feeling well, and that your vehicle is in good condition before setting out on your journey.


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