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Avoid an Accident When Driving at Night to Protect Yourself from Injury

As we move deeper into the fall, the days grow shorter as the nights grow longer. With more hours of darkness during a 24-hour period, you and other drivers are at a greater risk of being involved in car accidents because of the reduced visibility. In addition to this increased period of darkness each day, other weather-related fall changes like piles of leaves on the ground and an increased level of rainfall can increase your risk of being involved in a collision.

What can you do to reduce your risk of being involved in a car accident this fall? You cannot change the weather, but you can change the way you drive and prepare for the weather. The following tips can help you reduce your chance of being involved in a car accident this fall and potentially save you from suffering a severe injury.

Adjust Your Driving to your Environment

Because of the reduced visibility at night and in the rain and fog, adjust your driving style to account for the increased hazards. Drive more slowly than you would during the daytime and take turns less sharply. It is also important to give all other vehicles ample following distance.

Prepare Your Vehicle for the Weather

Early fall is a good time to make sure your tires have sufficient tread and if they do not, have them replaced. Bald tires can easily slip on wet roadways, putting you at risk of being involved in an accident. Also check your vehicle’s antifreeze and engine coolant levels and consider purchasing tire chains for the winter.

Stay Alert at All Times

It can be easy to feel tired at earlier hours when it is dark outside. Drowsy driving can be as dangerous as drunk driving, so be sure to only drive if you are well-rested. Eat protein-rich snacks and drink caffeinated beverages before setting out on long evening drives and if you feel tired, pull over and give yourself time to rest.

Make Yourself Visible

As a motorist, always use your headlights when driving in the rain or at night. If you are a motorcyclist, pedestrian, or bicyclist, be sure to wear light colored, reflective clothing to make yourself visible to drivers.

Ensure that You Can See Everything

In addition to making sure other drivers and pedestrians can see you, make sure you can see them and any hazards in the roadway. If you wear glasses, have your prescription checked to ensure it is up to date and consider outfitting them with anti-reflective lenses. Use your headlights starting 30 minutes before sunset and keep them on 30 minutes after sunrise.

Work with an Experienced La Crosse Personal Injury Lawyer

Although you can take steps to reduce your chance of being injured in a car accident, you cannot completely eliminate this risk. If you are involved in a car accident this fall, work with an experienced personal injury lawyer from Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd. to pursue a personal injury claim.

Published November 7, 2016
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