We deal with many issues when we turn the clocks back in the fall, and increased nighttime driving is one factor that is causing problems. The Educational Service Center of Lake Erie West reports that traffic fatalities in Lucas County have increased by 58% over this time last year. Fewer people drive at night than during the day, but 50% of deaths from auto accidents occur at night. Several factors contribute to fatal nighttime car crashes. Some of the top reasons include fatigue and poor night vision.
Night Driving More Difficult for Older People
When you are driving at night, it is more difficult to be aware of everything in your surroundings, especially for those over 50. When you combine poor night vision with the fact that many drivers are on the road after work, often in rush-hour conditions, you have a recipe for disaster as it gets dark. Even wildlife poses more of an issue in the late fall and early winter, as there is more deer movement, and animals are more difficult to see.
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Fatigue is also a dangerous issue that drivers face at any time. It is especially prevalent as seasonal affective disorder sets in, and drivers try to adjust to being on the road in conditions their eyes are not used to. The problem is even more-dire for drivers who have medical conditions like degenerative eye disease or cataracts.
Accidents Rise after Time Change
Due to daylight savings, the time change makes driving conditions difficult as pedestrians and drivers adapt to being out in darker conditions. Even though pedestrians can see a car’s headlights, they often neglect proper precautions and walk with their back to traffic. If they are dressed in dark clothing, it is often nearly impossible for drivers to see them on the road’s shoulder.
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Speed is also a factor that often adds to the number of accidents this time of year, so drivers should be especially cautious. It is also prudent to monitor your sleep patterns, as they often change when we turn the clocks back. Always be sure that you have enough rest and do not feel drowsy before getting behind the wheel.
If you are involved in a nighttime automobile accident this fall, contact the car accidents lawyers at Gallon, Takacs & Boissoneault at (419) 843-6663. Our experienced team can schedule a free consultation to discuss your unfortunate situation with an Ohio or Michigan personal injury attorney.
Jonathan Ashton, Partner and Personal Injury Attorney, began his law career at GT&B in 2007 as a law clerk. He was hired as an associate immediately after passing the Ohio Bar in 2008. Jonathan practices in Personal Injury, representing clients who have been injured and need justice and compensation for them to move forward in their lives.