Why car accident fatalities increase at night

On Behalf of | Apr 7, 2017 | car accidents

After the sun sets in Illinois, you may sit be out and about running errands, going out with friends or traveling home from work. In fact, the nighttime roadways can be busy and dangerous. According to the National Safety Council, people are three times more likely to be killed in a motor vehicle accident at night than they are during the day. What are the reasons for this significant increase in car accident deaths? How can you avoid becoming a victim of a nighttime accident?

The lack of natural light at night contributes to many car accidents. Despite the many street lights and headlights that illuminate the road, you may experience decreased vision when there is no natural light present. Furthermore, people may have difficulties identifying the speed and distance of oncoming vehicles in the dark, as the darkness can affect depth perception and peripheral vision. This may cause them to inadvertently turn out in front of a vehicle. In addition, people can have trouble spotting certain hazards at night, including pedestrian crosswalks, objects or animals in the road or bad weather conditions.

When the headlights of an oncoming vehicle shine directly in your eyes, it can cause temporary blindness and make it difficult to see. As people age, their eyes can become even more fragile. Studies show that a 50-year-old driver often needs nearly twice as much light to see as clearly as a 30-year-old driver.

If you must navigate the roadways at night, stay extremely alert and cautious. Avoid any distractions, such as cellphones and GPS devices. You may avoid a catastrophic car accident, injuries and even death.

This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.