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Why Should You Drive Slower At Night? Tips for Driving at Night

why should you drive more slowly at night

You might wonder why should you drive slower at night. This is a very reasonable question as winter approaches and sunshine hours decrease. Commutes at night have become more frequent, with rush hour starting after sundown.

However, you have more time to respond when you drive more slowly at night. You never know when an object or an animal will block a vehicle. Excessive speeds shorten your reaction time and make stopping distances much longer.

Additionally, it’s crucial to remember that animals could be more active at night. Animals such as raccoons and opossums are more active at dusk than at night. Your ability to see them and respond to them is enhanced when you slow down.

It will help if you consider the current weather. You might slide off the side of the road if you drive too quickly on snowy or slippery roads. Therefore, this guide will help you to know why you should drive slower at night and what things you can do to avoid mishaps.

7 Pro Tips For Driving Safely At Night

You can be more attentive to your surroundings when you are driving more slowly at night. You can respond to possible circumstances quickly at night by driving slowly. If you drive on a side road, you may encounter animals in front of your car.

Similar to other risky driving conditions like driving through snow, rain, or fog, you should pay close attention to your surroundings. Therefore, when you are driving at night, you should:

1. Be Aware of the Vicinity

Be Aware of the Vicinity

Night-time driving reduces your visibility. As a result, you must be three times as cautious as you are during the day. Avoid needless distractions like texting or talking on the phone, and look for weary or distracted drivers.

2. Check for Your Headlight Beam

Check for Your Headlight Beam

Driving at night requires working headlights and high beams. You are at risk if you cannot see what you are doing. Also, when driving at night a driver should dim the headlight beams so it’s easier for other drivers.

3. Drive Slower

Drive Slower

Driving slower at night gives you extra reaction time for potential problems or collisions because visibility is reduced. Additionally, it helps when you’re traveling on obscure or unfamiliar roads. Any warning signs or animals will be easier to spot.

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4. Watch Out for Animals

Watch Out for Animals

Check ahead for wild animals traveling on back roads or in less developed regions. When crossing the road, deer are infamous for leaping out in front of vehicles. Not only is this incredibly risky for the animal, but it’s also quite risky for you.

5. Don’t Drive Tired

Don't Drive Tired

Long-distance driving at night or after a long workday can tire you. The last thing you want to happen when driving is to nod off. You may want to stop your car near a well-lit area by the side of the road, open a window, and take a break to rouse yourself.

6. Dim Dashboard Lights

Dim Dashboard Lights

A dashboard light that is too bright may cause you to take your eyes off the road. Also, the bright lights might be confusing when looking at the dashboard to the roadway. To be able to see the important controls when driving at night a driver should dim the lights or modify the settings.

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7. Take Care of Your Eyes

Take Care of Your Eyes

Make sure your eyes are in good shape and suitable for driving. As you get older, your eyesight gets cloudier, making it harder for you to see clearly. Visit an optometrist regularly to have your eyes examined.

When driving at night, be careful to wear the right prescription glasses. Have eye drops on your hand to keep your eyes moisturized if they are prone to becoming dry.

5 Factors When You Are Driving At Night You Should Consider

Driving at night poses challenges and dangers you do not encounter during the day. In addition, while it is dark out, the usual dangers are a little riskier. In general, the eyes are less sensitive to depth, peripheral vision, and color in the dark.

As a result, driving at night decreases your capacity to react to potential hazards because your vision causes approximately 90% of your reactions. It takes less time to react when your visibility is just 350 to 500 feet. However, night driving is dangerous because:

1. Reduced Visibility

Reduced visibility is one of the factors why you should drive slower at night. Night-time traffic signals, other motorists, road debris, animals, and other impediments are no longer visible with natural light.

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Additionally, it is more challenging to estimate the distance between your car and another vehicle. Night-time driving is difficult since headlights and streetlights don’t offer as much visibility as daylight.

2. Age Factor

Age is a factor we never take into consideration when it comes to driving. However, it is one of the most important factors why you should drive slower at night. 

Unfortunately, as we age, it gets harder to see at night. Additionally, cataracts and other degenerative eye conditions can impair vision in older drivers.

3. Rush Hour

Most of the time people ignore many factors they should consider while driving. As such factors increase the risks of getting into fatal crashes. And many times questions like why should you drive slower at night arise.

So, one such factor is rush hour. During any season, the rush hour may be a difficult time to drive. Driving becomes riskier as the days grow shorter and night falls early. Driving in stop-and-go or bumper-to-bumper traffic becomes more challenging.

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4. Drowsy Driving

Fatigued Driving or drowsy driving is never safe for anyone. It could lead to fatal accidents you should always avoid. However, why should you drive slower at night? Because if you’re tired you can fall asleep and can get into an accident.

Moreover, sleep-deprived drivers are responsible for 50,000 serious injuries and 6,400 fatalities yearly on our roads. The speed of a sleepy driver’s reactions is significantly slower. Any time of day, particularly at night, is possible for fatigued driving.

5. Driving Under the Influence

The National Safety Council reports the highest number of fatal accidents on weekend nights. Moreover, it is always advised to not drive when intoxicated. However, when you are driving at night you shouldn’t drink and drive.

Weekends are the worst days for drunk drivers, between midnight and three in the morning. In the evening, when restaurants are closing, intoxicated motorists are more likely to be seen.

5 Items When You Are Driving At Night You Should Have

Driving at night can be dangerous because of the lack of visibility on the road. With these items, you can ensure you are safe while driving at night.

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However, you can use these items during the day while driving. It is not only for night-time driving, as these items ensure your comfort and assist you from being distracted.

1. Water

Many people don’t realize the importance of water while driving at night. When you are driving at night you should stay awake and focus. And dehydration can make you feel sleepy and increase your risk of accidents.

Even just a small amount of water can help keep you alert and reduce your risk of accidents. So, next time you’re planning a long drive, drink plenty of water before you get behind the wheel.

2. Everlasting Comfort Lumbar Support

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Lumbar support is necessary when you are driving at night. It helps you maintain good posture while sitting and prevents you from slouching. It also provides support for your back and spine, which can help relieve pain and prevent injuries.

However, choosing one that is comfortable and fits well is important. Everlasting Comfort makes adjustable lumbar support, fits most chairs, and has a lifetime warranty. This makes it a great choice for anyone looking for lumbar support.

3. Neck Pillow

When you are driving at night you should always have a neck pillow with you. The neck pillow will support your head and neck while you are sleeping. And it will also help to keep you comfortable while you are driving.

There are a few different types of neck pillows that you can choose from, and you should select the one that is right for you. Choosing a neck pillow that is both comfortable and supportive for your head and neck is the most important thing.

4. Car Phone Mount

Most people know it’s important to drive more slowly at night, but few know why. It’s generally accepted that night driving is more dangerous than driving during the day.

In addition, it’s more difficult to see pedestrians, animals, and other potential hazards.

This is why you should drive more slowly at night. If you use your phone while driving, mount it on a phone mount. This will help you stay focused on the road and help you avoid any unexpected crashes.

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5. Emergency Roadside Kit

Night driving presents a unique set of challenges, from reduced visibility to increased fatigue. And, this is why you should drive more slowly at night. Of course, the best way to avoid these challenges is to not drive at night.

But if you must drive, you can do a few things to mitigate the risks. Always having a roadside emergency kit in your car is one of the most important. This kit will help you if you get into some vehicle malfunctions.

Top FAQS Why Should We Drive Slower at Night?

Why Should You Drive More Slowly At Night?

The slower reaction times at night are one of the key justifications for driving more slowly. The poor sight takes longer to react to dangers, traffic lights, and other vehicles. You’ll give yourself more time to react when necessary if you drive more slowly.

What Is The Most Important Thing When Driving At Night?

You’ll probably get ten different replies if you ask ten people what they believe to be the most crucial driving element. Although defensive driving may be the greatest answer, most experts agree that mindset matters most.

Your attitude will determine how well or safely you’ll drive. You’re considerably less likely to drive erratically or put yourself in dangerous circumstances if you’re positive and calm.

When Should You Slow Down While Driving?

When driving on wet or snow-covered roads, you should cut your speed in half or more. For instance, if you typically drive at 60 mph on dry pavement, you should drop your speed to 40 mph on wet roads and 30 mph on snow-covered roads.

Driving slowly and carefully on slippery, icy roads is advised. However, if you can no longer handle your car safely, you should pull off the road.

Why Is It Harder To Drive At Night?

The light from oncoming traffic is one of the drivers’ main causes of night-time vision problems. Although headlights, high beams, and fog lights are intended to improve night-time visibility for drivers, they may also have unfavorable impacts. Glare can slow your reaction time, be annoying, and distract you.

What Time Is The Best Time To Drive At Night?

First off, continue to depart as soon as you can. Generally, a decent time to start is after rush hour traffic subsided at 5 o’clock. Many people find it easier to adjust their bodies, mind, and eyes by beginning in the light and gradually moving into the dark.

However, for other people, the change makes them feel exhausted. In that scenario, you might want to leave as soon as it gets completely dark. Consider your style as a night-time driver and make plans appropriately.

Final Thoughts

Why should you drive slower at night? The answer is, that driving slowly gives you more time to react to potential hazards and allows you to see better. Additionally, it can help you avoid getting pulled over for speeding.

Additionally, drowsy driving is more common at night, and fatigue can make it hard to concentrate. Driving slower can help ensure that you arrive safely at your destination. Finally, driving slower at night conserves fuel and is better for the environment.

Kevin Williams is an automotive enthusiast and expert writer with a passion for all things related to cars. With a wealth of knowledge in the world of vehicles, Kevin's mission is to provide informative articles that empower car enthusiasts to make informed decisions about their automotive interests. With extensive experience, Kevin has contributed numerous articles to Cars Cache, covering a wide spectrum of topics from vehicle reviews to maintenance tips and more.


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