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Humans are not nocturnal creatures. We are wired for activity during the day and sleeping at night. Our depth perception, color recognition and peripheral vision are also less acute at night. This is why, according to the National Safety Council, driver fatality rates are three times higher during the hours between dusk and dawn. Despite this, many people drive at night because their jobs and other commitments require it. However, there are measures drivers can take to increase their safety.
  1. Be Fully Awake and Alert
    Avoid alcohol and medications that cause drowsiness. Drowsiness is also caused by eating large meals full of carbohydrates. Smaller protein based meals are a better choice. If you are tired or sleep deprived, let someone else do the driving or take public transportation. Drink coffee or other caffeinated drinks because they are effective at keeping you alert.
  2. Check Your Headlights
    Make sure that both headlights work, including the high beams. Dirt, grit and bug buildup on your headlights will significantly reduce their brightness. Have a mechanic adjust their alignment. If they point too high or low or are aimed off to the side, your ability to see the road ahead is drastically reduced.
  3. Keep Your Windshield Clean
    Dirt and grease smudges, barely noticeable during the day, produce glare at night. Never use your hands to wipe off dirt because they will leave skin oils on the glass. Instead, use a cloth for cleaning. In addition, replace worn out windshield wipers because water streaks also cause glare at night.
  4. Watch Out For Nocturnal Animals
    The eyes of nocturnal animals are good at collecting light. This adaptation also causes their eyes to reflect light back at you. Watch for these reflective orbs and be ready to slow down when you see them. Remember that deer travel in herds. If you see one, there are probably several more in the vicinity.
  5. Don't Out Drive The Reach Of Your Headlights
    Slow down so that your braking distance doesn't exceed the reach of your headlights. If you are following another car, allow extra distance to compensate for your reduced depth perception.
  6. Avoid Looking At The Headlights Of Oncoming Traffic
    Looking at the lights of oncoming traffic can produce temporary night blindness especially when the headlights aren't dimmed. Look at the right edge of the road until the car passes by.
Stay alert and use the above tips when driving at night. Don't forget to look out for drowsy or intoxicated drivers who may be sharing the road with you.

Your safety is our priority. Call First Insurance Group at (800) 511-2892 for more information on Frankfort auto insurance.
Posted 6:53 PM

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