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Major Reasons Vehicle Wrecks Occur at Night

night_car_accidentNo matter how safe you try to be on the road, driving at night can be dangerous. According to the National Safety Council, the risk of being involved in a fatal car accident is three times greater at night than during the day.

In this article, we explore the reasons why negligent drivers cause more wrecks during nighttime hours.

Why Do So Many Car Accidents Occur at Night?

The causes of nighttime car accidents often involve negligent driving practices which, when combined with the lack of sunlight, can lead to a deadly wreck.

Common reasons drivers cause these accidents include:

  • Lack of visibility. It's not just darkness that causes a lack of visibility while driving at night. Headlight glare is a real concern for motorists. Large vehicles often have higher headlights that shine directly into the eyes of oncoming drivers. Some motorists' eyes are also more sensitive to headlight glare due to age, corrective vision surgery, or even color—people with light-colored irises are more bothered by glare.
  • Distracted driving. Another important factor that affects visibility is distracted driving. In less than five seconds, a traveler at 55 mph will cover the length of a football field, on average. Anything can happen in that distance: the car ahead may suddenly stop; a deer may jump out into the road; or another driver may cross the center line. Reading a text or thumbing through social media simply isn't worth five seconds of your time while driving. 
  • Intoxicated drivers. There are more intoxicated drivers on the roads during the nighttime hours. Alcohol and drug use greatly decreases reaction times, and contributes to incorrect perceptions of space and speed.  
  • Fatigued drivers. Drivers may also be more fatigued when driving at night. This can be caused by a number of factors, including intoxication, working extended hours or an alternative shift, or long travel times. Driving while drowsy can cause the same effects on a motorist’s abilities as if he were drunk.
  • Rush hour. Between 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., roads can be more congested—and hazardous—due to rush hour traffic and reduced visibility as dusk approaches. When drivers are impatient, speed, talk on their cellphones or text, they can cause an accident that can escalate into a multi-crash wreck.


Did a negligent driver cause you to suffer injuries in a nighttime car accident? Attorney Alan Morton is available to help fight for the compensation you deserve. To learn more, call our office to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.