Sun’s out, gun’s out! It’s now almost that time of year in the UK which most have been waiting for; summer. And after the past 12 months, we all deserve a little brightness in our lives.
But how does the glaring sun effect driving conditions? And what can we do to improve road safety whilst trying to look cool and work on our ”taxi driver tan”? Well, here are a few tips put together by Kildare County Council to help you during the next couple of months:
Use polarised sunglasses that can help prevent glare.
Delay driving times to occur before or after sunrise or sunset.
Don’t use high-gloss products on the dashboard, which can contribute to extra glare.
Keep the inside and outside of the windshield clean.
Make use of sun visors.
If glare is a problem, leave extra space between your car and others in the event of sudden stopping or other road hazards.
Drive slowly and be mindful of obstructions.
Try taking another route that goes in a different direction than the one from which the sun is shining.
Leave extra time so that you don’t feel rushed getting to your destination.
Eye exams or surgery can make eyes more sensitive to the sunlight. Avoid driving after these appointments.
And did you know that during the summer, you should also consider using the vehicle's visor even when the sun isn't directly shining into your eyes?
Vehicle and motoring company, Halford, have said: "Visors are designed to block out the sun with hindering your vision. Visors also reduce the amount of light that enters your field of vision, which helps your eyes to adjust better when you drive into patches of shade, so consider using your visor even when the sun isn't directly in your eyes."
Kildare County Council have also put together a list of helpful advice for pedestrians and cyclists to take into consideration throughout the summer months and throughout the rest of the year:
Be aware of your surroundings and look at the road from a driver’s perspective
If there is no footpath, walk on the right-hand side of the road facing oncoming traffic
Step in off the road to avoid approaching vehicles
Increase your visibility by wearing a high visibility or reflective jacket or vest, even in daylight hours.
Again, be aware of your surroundings
Considering the distance drivers must allow to pass a cyclist, always be aware that not all motorists may see you
Be more alert for approaching vehicles and prepare to pull in off the road if it is necessary
Being more visible to other road users is essential, even in daylight hours. You could wear a high visibility, illuminous or reflective garment to become more visible to others.
If cycling in groups, please bear in mind the width of the road and allow space for other vehicles to overtake or pass.
Bright sunlight is underestimated as a dangerous driving condition, so the advice is to use common sense and one or more of the above methods of reducing the amount of sunlight that makes its way inside your vehicle to ensure your safety when driving on a sunny day.