Drivers often hear about winter driving tips, but autumn has its own set of road hazards that everyone should consider when they get behind the wheel. Here are some things to watch for as well as some tips to help keep you safe as the seasons change.
As the days grow shorter, many people will find themselves driving in the dark more often. It’s important to realize that color recognition, depth perception, and peripheral vision are compromised when it is dark out. The glare of oncoming headlights can also make it more difficult to see. Allowing extra space between vehicles, wearing special glasses designed for night driving, and making sure you wear your prescription glasses if you need them, can help you avoid accidents when driving at night.
Not only are kids back in school, but new drivers are on the road who may not have much experience driving. Be especially careful in school zones where new drivers may be coming and going as they pick up their siblings or friends. School buses are also out on the road once again. Be prepared to stop when they stop – and never pass a school bus, in either direction, when they are picking up or dropping off children.
Earlier dusk makes it more likely deer will be out at the same time you are. In fact, statistics indicate that you are 3.5 times more likely to hit an animal, especially a deer, in November than in any other month. This is partly because mating season for deer occurs in November. Exercise extra caution when driving on rural, two-lane roads, as that is where most animal/vehicle collisions occur.
As beautiful as the autumn leaves are, they present a couple of issues when it comes to driving. A mat of fallen leaves makes it more difficult to stop due to reduced traction, and when there is an especially beautiful stand of trees, motorists will often slow down to take a better look. Be extra careful to avoid rear-end collisions at this time of year.
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