A recent survey by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) showed that four in ten collisions happen during the hours of darkness. It may be due to reduced visibility making one unable to judge speed and distance correctly.
The danger may be more to taxi drivers than it is to the average motorist. Taxi drivers will also have to handle troublesome and unpredictable customers. This article covers how a taxi driver can safely drive at night.
The tips apply to all drivers.
- Avert your eyes from oncoming vehicles – you do not want to dazzle other drivers. Similarly, you do not want to get dazzled. If the other driver does not dip their headlights in time, it may impair your vision temporarily. Slow down and pull over until your eyes recover.
- Be on the lookout for vulnerable road users – it may be challenging to spot vulnerable users like children and the elderly during dark hours. One needs to be extra careful and also watch out for cyclists.
- Note when you get tired – do not get carried away by the amounts you are earning. Remember that your body needs some rest.
- Keep a safe distance between you and the other vehicles – make sure to increase the distance between you and the next car and drive at low speeds. It is good for safety and keeping passengers calm, knowing that you value safety.
- Know how to use your lights – remember to have your headlights on dipped beam always. Only use full beam when driving on unlit country roads for more visibility of the road.
- Be sure to get your eyes tested – if at any time you start struggling to read traffic signs or the registration number of the car ahead of you, get your eyes tested. You may need to wear spectacles.
- Keep Windows Clear – Remember to clean the windows because they might seem clean during the day but look filthy during the night.
- Install CCTV and a dashcam – in the case of an accident, the dashcam footage can help insurers assess the accident. Police may also use the footage in their investigations.
- Agree on the fare upfront – the fare may be a source of dispute. To avoid disputes, agree on the fare before the trip begins.
- Carry minimum cash – an opportunistic passenger may attack if they notice that you are carrying large sums of cash. Make sure to drop off the money at a safe and secure place or keep it in a box inside the cab where the passenger cannot see it.
- Do not fight back when threatened – sometimes, the passenger may threaten you despite your efforts to minimize conflicts. Do not fight them. Encourage them to leave the cab and drive off, even if you will lose the money. It is better to stay safe.
You may follow all the precautions but roads are unpredictable. Your taxi can get involved in an accident, or a passenger can damage it badly. You will have to restore it to full functionality, and taxi insurance can help you restore it. You can check out some cheap taxi insurance quotes.