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Long hours on the road can lead to fatigue and tiredness when truck driving. It’s important to stay alert while driving so you can keep yourself and other motorists safe while on the road. Driving while tired or sleepy is as dangerous as driving drunk. And it’s equally important to take precautions and follow all local and federal regulations when driving at night. Make sure to use your headlights, keep your windshield clean, and keep an eye out for reckless or drunk drivers.
Driving in the dark hours brings a unique set of challenges to drivers so follow these guidelines to stay safe.
Bugs, dirt, and other stuff can build up on your truck’s windshield. It’s a good idea to clean your windshield whenever you fill up your tank to keep that debris from limiting your visibility. When you’re driving at night, the reflection in your windshield can cause visibility issues if your windshield is dirty. Replace your wiper blades regularly, clean your windshield frequently, and keep a microfiber cloth or something to do a quick wipe if you notice something that will impact your driving.
Many truck drivers only ever use their regular headlights. But as long as you’re not within 500 feet of an oncoming vehicle, it’s safe to use your high beams. And in areas with limited visibility or no overhead street lights, driving with your high beams on will enable you to see and avoid any obstacles on the road.
Truckers often drive on highways that are frequented by animals like deer, coyotes, and other wildlife, especially at night. It’s important to stay alert and pay attention to the shoulders, especially if the sides of the highway have lots of trees and natural landscaping where animals could hide.
Help your eyes stay focused on the road and keep your dark vision intact by dimming your dashboard lights. You still need to be able to read your dashboard, but reduce the strain on your eyes when driving at night by dimming those lights slightly.
Bright lights from oncoming vehicles can cause temporary blindness if you look directly at the light. It can take several seconds to recover from the glare, and that can be dangerous for you as well as other motorists. When watching the road, look down and to the right when oncoming traffic has bright lights that can potentially cause this issue.