It’s late, you’re tired and you’re squinting your eyes to see the road. Sound familiar? While most Americans avoid night driving because of it’s dangerous conditions, nearly 25 percent of drivers still hit the road after dark.

Why is night driving a bad idea? Driving at night presents different types of challenges than day driving. Your depth perception is measurably altered and your peripheral vision is worse in low-light conditions.

Fatigue also plays a role in night driving. Drowsiness has been known to make driving extremely difficult by dulling concentration and slowing reaction time. Even if you’re not tired, others on the road might be.

Still unsure? Consider this: According to the National Safety Council, traffic death rates are three times greater at night than during the day.

If you’re still planning on driving before the sun comes up, the National Safety Council recommends the following:

• Prepare your car for night driving. Clean headlights, taillights, signal lights and windows (inside and out) once a week, more often if necessary.

• Have your headlights properly aimed. Misaimed headlights blind other drivers and reduce your ability to see the road.

•  Don’t drink and drive. Not only does alcohol severely impair your driving ability, it also acts as a depressant. Just one drink can induce fatigue.

•  Avoid smoking when you drive. The nicotine and carbon monoxide from smoke hamper night vision. Plus, it’s an added distraction.

•  If there is any doubt, turn your headlights on. Lights will not help you see better in early twilight, but they’ll make it easier for other drivers to see you. Being seen is as important as seeing.

•  Reduce your speed and increase your following distances. It is more difficult to judge other vehicle’s speeds and distances at night.

Whatever time of day you are driving on the road, take precautions and follow all road regulations to ensure a safe and accident-free trip. If you find yourself getting drowsy, it’s always a better alternative to get a hotel on the road. offers great hotel discounts all over the country, especially off the highway.