Crashes in Ohio often happen at night due to limited visibility. We just passed the winter solstice. And until the spring daylight savings arrives, many drivers will spend more time in the dark.
Limited nighttime visibility
According to the National Safety Council, drivers only have an average nighttime visibility range of 250 feet with standard headlights. That range doubles to 500 feet when high-beams are activated.
Nighttime driving can be especially problematic for drivers age 60 and older. This is primarily due to diminished eyesight, as well as other conditions such as cataracts and degenerative eye diseases.
Visibility at night can be further obstructed by rain, snow, sleet, fog, or other vehicles with high-beams turned on.
Roadways in bigger cities such as Toledo and Akron are often well-lit. But not so much on the rural roads of Ohio and Western Pennsylvania.
Poor headlight quality, a factor in car accidents
According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), there is a link between poor headlight quality and accidents caused by limited visibility. Loss of quality can happen when headlights are exposed to sunlight for long periods of time. The protective plastic layer eventually breaks down, which can happen within three to five years.
Over time, headlight covers can become clouded and start to take on a yellowish film. When this happens, they only emit about 20 percent of the light given off by brand-new headlights. AAA reports that diminished headlights are a contributing factor to about 50 percent of all car accidents that happen at night.
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When it comes to nighttime car accidents in Ohio, the quality of another driver's headlights is an important part of the equation. It's an often-overlooked part of vehicle maintenance that anyone can fail to notice. However, when drivers can't see adequately at night, they have less time to react.
Accidents caused by poor visibility can be highly complex and may require a thorough investigation. There may be more to the story. Perhaps the at-fault driver was traveling too fast for the conditions. Maybe he or she was distracted and didn't have enough time to take evasive measures. Or maybe the driver was tired or driving under the influence of alcohol.
These are factors that an experienced Ohio car accident attorney can examine when piecing together a solid claim. The legal team at Gervelis Law Firm has the experience and legal knowledge to investigate even the most complex crashes. We'll leave no stone unturned when it comes to holding negligent drivers and their insurance companies accountable.
If you have been injured in a car accident, we'd like to discuss your matter with you. Contact us today to find out how we can help.