Glare & Its Effect on Winter Driving
Winter driving can be the most dangerous time of year, but not always for the reasons you think. Glare and distracted driving play as big of a role in accidents as snow and ice do. Here are some tips for the extreme weather to help you and your family stay safe.
Light reflections caused by sunlight, especially when the sun is at a low angle during the morning or evening, can interfere with drivers’ ability to see the road. Drivers can be blinded by sunlight that is reflected off many surfaces, including the windows of other vehicles or buildings. Glare from reflected light can be even more troublesome during wet conditions.
Sunny summer months aren’t the only times to worry about sun-glare; fall and winter leave drivers especially vulnerable to reflective blinding, as the sun is at a lower angle throughout the day and leafless trees don’t block any light.
Safe drivers will adjust their speed when the sun interrupts their vision. However, sudden sharp curves in the road or unexpected glare reflecting off buildings or shining through trees can dangerously impair drivers’ vision. Sources of unexpected glare can result in catastrophic consequences for even the safest motorists.
Tips for Sunny Winter Driving
- Make sure the inside and outside of your windshield is clean, and get any cracks or chips repaired.
- Always maintain a safe driving distance between you and other drivers, and reduce your speed if your vision becomes impaired by sun-glare.
- Help other drivers see you by keeping your headlights on, even during the day when you might not think they are necessary.
- There are many ways to directly reduce the glare that you experience in your car. Head-on glare through the windshield can be greatly reduced or eliminated altogether by the installation of Sunstrips. These narrow pieces of window film can be installed on the top part of your windshield to greatly increase visibility and reduce glare at the same time. Your sunroof deserves the same attention as well. Substantial glare can be caused by sunroofs, but since they are small, it is an easy and inexpensive problem to solve. The right combination of window film products can solve distracting glare from all your car’s windows.
A Tip for Pedestrians
Walking or jogging with their back to the traffic makes pedestrians twice as likely to be seriously injured or killed by an erratic vehicle. Simply by facing oncoming traffic, Pedestrians are more able to see traffic patters, and avoid a potential disaster.
For cyclists, evening comes early, forcing riders to pedal home in the dark. Snowdrifts squeeze streets, eliminating a comfortable side lane for bikes. Frozen fingers and feet are common issues for the unprepared.
But dress right, use fenders and lights, maybe add studded tires, and commuting by bike in the bleak months can be comfortable and efficient.