After Daylight Saving Time ends, our bodies have to adjust to the time change and the darker evening commute. This disruption to the body’s rhythm can have an impact on driving safety. After the time change, the hour between 5 and 6 p.m. becomes especially dangerous.
Because the evening commute is darker, visibility and alertness are key. Drivers can adapt to the darkness by:
Ensuring lights are in good working order. Headlights can show deterioration after even three years. Check for yellowing, clouding and other changes in appearance. Restoring or replacing headlights can increase visibility.
Decreasing speed. Travel at slower speeds to compensate for reduced visibility and increase following distance when it’s dark or weather conditions are poor.
Turning slowly at intersections. Reduce speed in turns, especially in areas with poor lighting. Slow speeds to 5 mph when turning, and don’t speed through yellow light and turn at the same time.
Not being blinded by the light. If oncoming headlights are too bright, look down toward the right side of the road and follow the edge of the lane or the white-edge line to stay on course until the vehicle passes.
Being aware of glare. Sun glare can compromise visibility. Use a sun visor, invest in polarized sunglasses, and leave extra room between your car and the car in front of you when the sun is in your eyes.