We see it all the time in the movies. Characters with their sunglasses on, driving with the top down on a clear highway with the sun shining on the horizon. It sounds wonderful but it is hardly reality. Driving while facing the sun, especially at a certain point in the sky, can cause the dangerous condition known as sun glare, where drivers temporarily lose sight of the road ahead.
Sun glare is most prominent when the sun is close to the horizon, shortly after sunrise and before sunset. The position of the sun is usually lower than the coverage provided by a car’s pull-down sun visor, forcing drivers to look directly into the sun’s path. Early spring and early fall are typically the worst times for sun glare due to the earth’s rotation around the sun. Motorists have described sun glare as a momentary blindness where they cannot see what is ahead of them. While it may be only a second or two, that is plenty of time to cause an accident with another vehicle or a pedestrian crossing the street.
While you can’t change the position of the sun, there are things you can do to try and cut down on sun glare. AAA recommends the following:
- Try and buy a pair of polarized sunglasses which could help reduce the glare.
- Leave more following room. If you cannot see what the car in front of you is doing, you will need the extra room in case you need to make a sudden stop to avoid a rear-end collision.
- Keep your windshield and windshield wipers clean. Any dirt, streaks or smears on your windshield will only intensify with the direct sunlight.
- Keep papers and any other items off your dashboard that could reflect onto your windshield.
In addition, use common sense. If you travel the same route every day and you are aware of the time and place where the sun glare is the worst (especially during rush hour), make adjustments before you encounter it. Slow down during periods of intense sun glare. If you would slow down in rain, snow or fog, there is no reason why you would not slow down in this weather condition as well.
Drivers have a responsibility at all times on the road to ensure the safety of others. While sun glare can cause problems for motorists, it is just another factor to take into consideration when getting behind the wheel to avoid an accident. The attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C., have extensive knowledge and experience in helping those injured in all types of motor vehicle accidents. If you are injured and need legal assistance after an accident, please contact Finz & Finz, P.C., today.