This past weekend, we turned the clocks back - and while the extra hour of sleep was great, we also need to acknowledge the safety risks that come along with the time change. With the sun setting earlier and earlier, we have plenty of dark rush hours ahead of us, and will need to be more careful on the road.
To pave the way for a safe winter, we're answering some of the questions you're likely asking yourself right now.
What makes nighttime driving so unsafe?
"Lack of light, compromised night vision, rush hour, impaired drivers and fatigue all contribute to making driving at night more dangerous than any other time of the day," reports National Safety Council. "In fact, traffic deaths are three times greater at night."
What can I do to stay safe on the road?
- Light it up
Use your headlights, even "one hour before dusk and one hour after dawn," as advised by the DMV, which also reminds us that nine tenths of a driver's reaction depends upon vision.
- Keep it clean
Wipe your windshield's interior and exterior to ensure nothing is obstructing your vision.
- Stay alert
Especially on the weekends, as Friday and Saturday nights have the highest drunk-driver car fatality rates. Of course, don't drink yourself if you're planning on driving. Even in moderation, alcohol can promote sleepiness and slow your reaction time. If you feel yourself getting drowsy, pull over and take a nap or a walk (armed with pepper spray, of course).
- Slow it down
Leave extra room between you and the car ahead of you.
- Bring the heat
What would you do if your car broke down at night? Chances are, you'd like to have a personal safety tool on hand to stay safe until help arrives. Our keychain models attach to your car keys so you'll have your product handy any time you take your car out for a spin.