When it comes to driving, there are a number of preventative measures drivers can take to increase safety on the road and prevent accidents, especially since so many accidents are caused by driver errors. One of these measures involves refreshing yourself on your car functions and state traffic and safety laws like the ones governing headlight usage. While signage and public service announcements always remind us to fasten our seat belts, there’s less literature out there to remind drivers when they should turn on their headlights. Understanding headlight etiquette is extremely important because your lights are the one thing that allows you to be able to see the road at night and in poor weather.
What Are My Headlights & When Do I Use Them?
Your headlights, which are also known as dipped headlights or low beams, are designed to give you maximum visibility when navigating streets and highways. These differ from high beams, or full beam headlights, which are brighter and angled higher to give drivers even higher visibility than low beams. It’s recommended that you refrain from using your high beams unless you’re in a secluded or rural area with no cars around, as the harsh light can blind oncoming drivers and cause serious accidents and injuries.
When Must You Use Your Headlights?
In South Carolina, the law firmly mandates that all vehicles traveling on streets or highways must turn on their headlights from a half-hour after the sun sets until a half-hour before sunrise. Simply put, all drivers must turn on their headlights when they are driving at night.
Other instances that legally require you to turn on your lights in South Carolina include:
- When your windshield wipers are on in the event of rain, sleet, or snow
- Any time you’re having trouble spotting other drivers or if drivers may have trouble spotting you
These situations specifically apply to driving in the rain, snow, or fog, and if you’re caught violating these laws, you could be pulled over and issued a fine. Without your low beams, it can be nearly impossible for you to detect other cars or road hazards in front of you in the dark or on a rainy day, increasing your risk of getting into an accident. A driver who forgets to turn on their headlights when driving at midnight, for instance, may be unable to see a slowed or stalled car in the middle of the street until it’s too late to avoid colliding with it.
To avoid creating a dangerous situation for yourself and others, it’s best to remember to turn on your lights as soon as the sun goes down and whenever you need to use your wipers – fortunately, many newer car models are equipped with a function that automatically turns on the low beams when the windshield wipers are activated.
Millions Recovered for Car Accident Victims
At Bostic Law Group, P.A., we take car accidents seriously. Even if you received minor injuries, you deserve to be compensated for your damages, pain, and trauma from the at-fault party. No victim should ever have to be personally responsible for paying their own medical bills or car repairs when someone else’s negligence caused them harm. Our car accident attorneys have more than 25 years of experience and a successful track record that shows how committed we are to getting results for our clients. We’ve helped clients who have been injured by drunk drivers, distracted drivers, speeding, and more, and we’re ready to use this knowledge to help you in your personal injury claim.
Contact our team online or by phone at (843) 350-9646 for a free consultation after a car accident. If you or someone you love has been injured, you may be entitled to seek compensation from the at-fault driver.