Dozens of road deaths and thousands of injuries occur each year due to sun glare on drivers' windscreens. Since 2010 there have been around 28 road deaths and 3,900 injuries annually due to sun glare, according to the Department for transport.
Spring and autumn are the key sun dazzle danger periods, as the rising and setting sun coincides with heavy morning and evening traffic.
Most dazzle-related accidents take place on A-roads and minor roads. Sun glare represents a significant seasonal driving problem – and is a big road safety issue in a country with one of the lowest road traffic accident rates in the world.
Here is some information and tips on how to deal with sun glare for our car breakdown customers.
Sun glare is especially dangerous when a car turns into the sun, causing a sudden loss of vision or 'blindness'. Dazzling sun can also appear suddenly from behind trees and buildings, or in a reflected surface.
Attempting to overtake into low sunlight is especially dangerous, since the road ahead can be obscured. Head-on lorry crashes increase four fold around sunset.
Vehicles which cast long shadows are harder to see for approaching drivers and those turning into a road facing them.
In low sun it is important to keep your speed down and leave a larger gap between you and the vehicle in front. This will give you additional reaction time – especially important if you are driving through school zones or pedestrianised areas.
Keep your windscreen clean
Dirt and grime on your windscreen can exacerbate the effects of sun glare, so keep yours clean. Chips or cracks can also make glare worse, so ensure your windscreen glass is in good condition.
This simple device can be very effective at blocking the sun
Keep you visibility as high as possible by wearing sunglasses. Polarised sunglasses are especially effective at countering glare.
Keeping your headlights dipped will make you more visible to other road users.
If sun glare is persistently making it difficult to see the road ahead, stop somewhere safe and wait until conditions improve.