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How to Account for the Sun’s Glare While Driving

There's a 16 percent greater chance of being involved in a major accident during sunny weather. This was according to a study published by the National Institute of Health. While driving in the sun can be challenging, there are steps that you can take to decrease your chances of getting into an accident.

Be Sure to Keep Your Windshield Clear

One of the best ways to diminish the impact of the sun's glare on your vision is to make sure that your windshield is free from debris like dirt or salt. It's also a good idea to make sure that your windshield wipers are in good condition and that they don't streak material across the glass. Finally, be sure that you have sufficient windshield wiper fluid to remove any dried-on dirt, salt or grime that may be kicked up by other vehicles. If you had the means to keep your windshield clear but failed to do so, you could be at fault if you got into an accident due to not being able to see clearly.

Wear Sunglasses While Driving

If you know that you'll be encountering sunny conditions while driving to work, school or any other destination, be sure to wear sunglasses. The sun's glare tends to be worst just before sunrise and just before sunset. Therefore, a quality pair of glasses can be especially useful during your drive to work or home from school later in the afternoon.

In the event that you don't have a pair of sunglasses available, you can use the visor in your vehicle or put on a hat. In extreme cases, you may be able to shield the sun with your hands. Note, though, that taking your hands off the wheel while driving is not safe, and if it was proven that you did so, you might be accountable if you were then involved in an accident. It's better to pull over for a bit to wait for the sun's position in the sky to change.

Drive a Different Route

Instead of driving east during the morning rush hour or west later in the evening, it may be worthwhile to choose a different route during times of strong sun glare. In some cases, simply choosing back roads instead of driving on the highway means driving on roads that have fewer vehicles on them.

This can reduce your chances of getting into an accident when the sun is out even if you don't manage to avoid its glare. Smartphone apps and similar tools may be able to help you find a route that allows you to get to work both in a timely manner and safely.

Increase Your Following Distance

Ideally, you'll remain at least one or two car lengths behind the vehicle in front of yours. However, the sun's glare can make it harder to judge the distance between your vehicle and others on the road. This means that you should err on the side of caution when it comes to how close you choose to follow others. You could be held liable if it was determined that you were following too close behind another vehicle when you got into an accident.

It's also a good idea to reduce your speed when driving in bright conditions. If you can, drive on the right side of the road where slower traffic tends to congregate. While it may extend your morning or evening commute by a few minutes, it will force you to slow down and pay greater attention to what's going on around you.

Make Use of Advanced Safety Features

Newer vehicles have lane assist, forward collision warning and other features that will alert the driver if he or she is not where he or she should be on the road. If you plan on driving in sunny conditions on busy roads, then it could be worth looking into vehicles that have these or other features. Regardless of the car that you currently drive, our Philadelphia accident lawyer will be here to help in the event that you're in a collision.

Keep Your Eyes on Lane Markings

Focusing on lane markings can help you get a better sense of where you are on the road when the sun's glare is making it difficult to see. If you can't see the solid lines in the middle of the road or the solid white line near the shoulder, then you're not in a lane. Ideally, you'll either move back into a lane quickly or pull to the side of the road to avoid an accident.

If you're involved in a car crash, contact Metzger & Kleiner to learn more about how our Philadelphia car accident attorney may help you in its aftermath. You can contact the Lehigh Valley office at 610-435-7400 or the Philadelphia office at 215-567-6616.

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