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When The Sun Is Trouble For Drivers In The Sunshine State


While many Floridians adore the sunshine famous in the state, when the glare of the sun impairs a driver’s vision, it can be a real problem. What makes the sun a driver’s enemy at times?

  • When the sun is rising or setting, it is often directly in the driver’s line of sight, literally causing a degree of temporary blindness;
  • When the sunlight encounters streaks, dead bugs, or other imperfections on a driver’s windshield, the glare is exacerbated;
  • The glare of the sun can reflect in a driver’s rear-view mirror, making it difficult to see.

Most drivers have experienced sun glare at one time or another, and been frustrated with their inability to see clearly. The lucky ones have not careened into the side of the road, another vehicle, or an innocent pedestrian. But far too often, accidents do occur as a result of sun glare. What is a driver to do? 

Suggestions from AAA

Drivers can take a number of steps to minimize the risk of driving into a sunset or sunrise. AAA provides these timely suggestions:

  • Purchase sunglasses that are polarized and assist in reducing sun glare;
  • Make use of the sun visor to block out the sun’s rays;
  • Leave plenty of room between yourself and other drivers, giving yourself more time to react to problems;
  • Turn on your headlights to increase your own visibility to others on the road;
  • Maintain a clean windshield;
  • Get rock chips and cracks repaired in a timely manner;
  • Let lane markings guide you if you’re having trouble seeing ahead;
  • Don’t keep items on the dashboard.

Additional Driving Tips

While it’s always smart to avoid distractions, fatigued driving, and inebriated driving, it becomes especially important when conditions are more tenuous. Driving when the sun’s rays are low is just such a time. It also becomes particularly critical to follow posted speed limits, to come to a complete stop as required by signals and signs, and to obey any other traffic laws.

Solar Glare Responsible for Accidents on the Road

One man was behind the wheel of an 18-wheeler in April of 2018 when suddenly the tractor-trailer overturned onto its side, blocking traffic in both directions for several hours. The reason for the accident, according to the man, was the setting sun, which blinded him. He swerved, over corrected, and wound up in a serious accident. Fortunately, he survived with only minor injuries, and was cited for failing to maintain lane control.

Following an Accident

While an accident is often not the result of malice, or even negligence, it can still result in serious injuries or death. If you find yourself dealing with the aftermath of another driver’s sun blindness, the experienced legal team at the Law Offices of Robert W. Elton can help. Contact us in Daytona & Ormond Beach for a confidential consultation today.