Low sunlight or glare can be a dangerous hazard when driving your car.
Drivers have a lot more to contend with on Irish roads during the winter months as there’s an increase in the likelihood of ice, snow or wet road conditions. But there’s another hazard on Irish roads that results in hundreds of accidents every year that may not spring to mind: low sunlight. Glare from low sunlight can dramatically reduce visibility. We’ve compiled a list of ways to help protect you and your passengers in the event of low sunlight while driving.
1. Clean your car windscreen
Dirt and debris on your window can reduce visibility. In low light, sunlight will highlight the dirt on your windscreen making it harder for you to see any hazards on the road ahead. This doesn’t just apply to the outside of your car; grease on the inside of your windscreen from fingerprints etc. can also have the same impact.
Before you set out on your journey during the winter months, ensure that your windscreen is properly cleaned inside and out and that you have an adequate levels of windscreen washer in your car. You should also take the time to check your wiper blades during the winter months.
2. Wear polarized sunglasses
Sun glasses aren’t just for summer. Always keep a spare pair of sunglasses in your car during the winter months. Polarized glasses are particularly helpful for protecting against glare and low sunlight. You can also use them to help improve visibility where there is a glare from the sun shining on wet roads.
3. Slow down
The most important step to improving safety in low light is to slow down. When visibility is low, you have less time to see approaching hazards. By slowing down, you can increase your chances of spotting a hazard and it will reduce the damage if you are involved in an accident.
4. Avoid Driving at Sunset or Sunrise
It may not always be possible to change your timetable based on the weather conditions outside, but if you can, try to avoid driving at sunrise or sunset during the winter months.
For more winter driving tips, check out our article on Tips for Driving in Winter.