A disproportionate number of fatal crashes occur in the dark, according to a recent study published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine. This is true in Missouri, throughout the U.S., and even across the world. According to Forbes, 49 percent of fatal crashes occur at night, when the fatality rate per mile driven is roughly three times higher than it is during daylight hours. But why are there so many fatal and injury-causing collisions at night and in the pre-dawn morning? There are a number of factors, ranging from alcohol to depth perception.
Driving Under the Influence
54 percent of fatal crashes that take place during the night are alcohol-related. As such, intoxication alone accounts for the largest, by far, contributing a factor of why nighttime driving is so much more dangerous than daytime driving. People are more likely to drink in the evening and at night, which leads to drunk or “tipsy” driving. Even one drink significantly impairs a driver’s decision making, reaction time, and awareness of what is going on around them. Chronic drinkers are less likely to notice the effects of a drink than those who do not drink often, but they are no less impaired.
The later it gets, the more likely those out on the roads are suffering from fatigue. Commercial and professional drivers who have been out on the road for a long time or who are chronically fatigued due to a graveyard shift are some of the biggest culprits of drowsy driving.
Difficult to Judge Distances in the Dark
Depth perception is lost to a large degree during the dark, which makes lane changes, intersections, crossing left across a lane of traffic, and pulling out from side streets more dangerous than it is during the day.
Glare from Oncoming Headlights
Glare can cause temporary “night blindness,” which may cause a driver to accidentally exit their lane of traffic and drift into another lane, miss a curve up ahead of them, or fail to see a changing stop light or other traffic sign.
Visibility Is Low
A loss of depth perception, glare from oncoming traffic or street lights, and overall less visibility all add up to visual degradation and danger. Drivers should take into account all of these forms of visual impairment, and act accordingly by driving slower, being more cautious, giving cars in front of them more space, and being patient when pulling into traffic or across a lane of traffic.
Call the Kansas City Car Accident Lawyers at Krause & Kinsman
Aside from speeding, driving carelessly or recklessly, or driving under the influence, you may be able to understand where the other party is coming from and how you yourself could have caused a collision in the same fashion from glare, fatigue, or loss of depth perception. This does not mean that their apology should serve as amends. Your financial damages are real, and only an Kansas City Car accident attorney can help you collect the compensation that you both need and fully deserve. Call our Kansas City auto accident lawyers here at Krause & Kinsman today at 816-399-3356.
Adam Krause is a personal injury, mass tort, business litigation, and employment discrimination attorney who practices in Kansas City, Missouri. He graduated from the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Law and has been practicing law for several years now. Adam Krause has made a career of taking complicated litigation and presenting it in the most elementary terms for a jury of your peers to understand. Learn more about his experience here.