This is the first of our 4-part series on ways to see and be seen. In this series we will examine some of the most important things drivers can do to ensure they can see – and are seen by – other drivers. By ensuring you make yourself as visible as possible, you could drastically reduce your chances of being involved in a Pennsylvania auto accident.
The first of many important features on vehicles are headlights. In addition to using them at night to light the path in front of your vehicle, headlights have also proven to be beneficial during daylight hours. So beneficial, in fact, that many vehicles are equipped with daytime running lights (DRLs), which are headlights that are illuminated whenever the vehicle is running.
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Headlights can not only be beneficial to you – the driver – but also to the drivers of other vehicles on the roadway with you. Most drivers know to use their headlights at night, but may not necessarily know when to use them other times that they are lawfully required. Under Pennsylvania law, motorists are required to use their headlights under the following conditions:
• Between sunset and sunrise: This is the most common – and arguably the most important – time to use your headlights.
•Anytime the driver cannot discern a person or vehicle from 1,000 feet due to unfavorable atmospheric conditions: 1,000 feet can be a difficult distance for a driver to discern, so be safe and always turn on your headlights if the atmospheric conditions are unfavorable due to precipitation, fog or mist. Always remember to use your low beams or fog lamps in these situations, as the bright light can reflect from particulates or precipitation in the air and shine into your eyes.
•Anytime the vehicle’s windshield wipers are on due to precipitation, including rain, sleet or snow: Using your headlights during inclement weather helps other motorists see your vehicle.
• When traveling through a construction zone: This is one of the newest headlight laws in Pennsylvania. Under this law, motorists are required to illuminate their headlights when travelling through a work zone. The violation is a secondary offense, meaning that you cannot be pulled over for this offense alone; however, it is always a good idea to be safe every time you are in a work zone.
If you are in a situation in which headlights are not required, they are still good to have on, as anything you can do to make your vehicle more visible is encouraged. If you have been injured in a Pennsylvania car crash because of another driver’s negligence, you need to contact Cordisco & Saile. We can help you through this difficult time and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.