Late Night Driving Dangers & Prevention Tips


Driving while drowsy has been one of the most downplayed scenarios that oftentimes ends up with fatal car crashes, leaving late night tow truck services in high demand. As a matter of fact, as per the data from the New Jersey Division of Highway Safety as of 2019, about 20 percent of road accidents were caused by it.

Who is at risk?
Fatigue is not something to be underestimated. You can get into a road crash after forcing yourself to drive while feeling under the sun. However, those with untreated sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and those with work rotating shifts are more at risk for it because of their irregular sleep patterns. Moreover, those who are currently under a medication that lists drowsiness as one of its side effects are also highly discouraged to drive at night. If you fall under these categories, then it is best to reconsider your decisions in order to reduce these risks.

The Prevention
Before anything else, the key to helping yourself prevent fatigue driving is to accept that you yourself are fatigued, and no matter how determined you are. Then from there, start avoiding it.
If late-night driving is inevitable, however, due to your line of work or because had plans with your friends, the best way to keep yourself awake while driving through a dark, silent night is by rolling down your windows and listening to music. If it is a long drive you are currently in, know that it is perfectly safe to take a quick nap at a safe rest stop provided safety precautions are in place. 
If it’s late and you have vehicle issues, don’t call a friend. A local towing truck company that is adept and seasoned at late night driving can likewise come to your rescue and tow your vehicle to your supposed destination.

Below are more tips to help you keep away from the dangers of late-night driving:

1.     Drive extra defensively; drive sober 
Late-night driving per se already has its dangers and obviously, this can magnify if you drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs. According to NHTSA’s records, of the late-night driving incidents that ended up in fatal crashes, the majority of them are DUI or Driving Under the Influence. Do not end up with the same fate; put your defensive driving mode in place, sober.

2.     Fight fatigue and drowsiness
Records show that road crashes caused by drowsy driving most likely take place between 12 midnight to 6 am. Thus, you have two things to bear in mind here: first, that you should keep yourself alert and combat your drowsiness as you drive; and second, that you should also watch out for other vehicles that may have been operated by fellow drowsy drivers.
To combat fatigue, you can dose up on caffeine and have your coffee fix before or as you drive. Or you can simply stop in a safe place along the roadside for a quick nap; that is probably the best and safest way to deal with your predicament.

3.     Keep your window clear and clean
Late-night drives feel so long so you might want to make sure your windshields and headlights are clear and clean to avoid glares that can hinder your sight or worsen your drowsiness. Nowadays, special cleaning kits for windshields and headlights are widely available. It will come in handy if you load them inside your car in order to be prepared at all times.

4.     Prioritize two-lane roads and never speed.  
Because of the headlights from the oncoming cars, nighttime glares are far highly likely on one-lane roadways. It is always best to opt for double-lane roads if you must drive late at night then keep in mind to drive slowly and defensively at all times. Do not speed even though it looks tempting.
“Is slowing down necessary?”

Slowing down will be a patience-testing decision but whenever you get tempted, remember that you are doing it all for safety as it will give you enough time to avoid potential collisions. 
Double lane roadways also benefit a defensive driver. If someone is driving badly, then you can go around them. You can also get near the center if there are animals congregating on the side of the road. 

5.     Keep your beams high when necessary.
At the core, high beams should be underutilized and used only in rural areas, specifically in long open roads. High beams will help you detect and be detected by an oncoming car far ahead, eradicating the likelihood of blinding and potential accidents.

That said, if your line of work makes it hard for you to quit late-night driving, then make sure your headlights are well set and are angled correctly. They should not be tilting down too much to keep that illumination you will be needing as you drive. At the same time, they should not be tilted too high so you will not end up hindering the other drivers’ sights. After all, to be safe on the road sometimes takes a collective effort.

6.      Keep your interior lights dim
This is important so that you will be able to spot the critical controls easily which can also serve as your guide as to how your vehicle is doing. As much as possible, keep away from too bright dashboard lights. They can be disorienting most of the time.

7.     Keep your eyes stuck on the road
Do not get blinded by staring at oncoming vehicles headlights. When it seems to happen, immediately shift your eyes to the right or down and have the lane markings serve as your guide.

8. Stay alert
Just because the road looks long and peaceful and you cannot find any seeming headlight on sight, it does not guarantee any danger. Animals crossing the street might surprise you, resulting in a collision.
It could be because of your line of duty or you simply ended up spending the night at one of the clubs around Newark with friends or watched a Devil’s game after a long day of work. Whatever the reason is for late-night driving, it always pays to keep the mentioned tips in mind to end up at your destination safe and intact.

Listen to your instinct and be true to yourself. If you think you are no longer safe to drive, don’t worry; a reliable tow company in Newark, NJ like Newark Tow Truck has got your needs covered. Give us a call and we’ll tow your vehicle to your destination with you in it. We have been trusted for years in terms of quality and reliable roadside assistance and towing services in and around Newark, New Jersey for a reason.