Night driving is made harder by:
People with dirty and poorly aimed headlights.
Houses with exterior floodlights aimed to light up the air.
Buildings with bulkhead type lights that just throw the light everwhere.
Cyclists who deliberately seem to aim their intensive lights at the eyes
Drivers who don't dip their headlights when you can see them coming towards
you. (That goes without saying, which I presume is why you didn't mention
Drivers who leave their rear (red) foglights on even when it isn't foggy.
Drivers who keep their brake lights on when they are stopped for many
minutes in a queue of traffic, dazzling and "destroying" the night vision of
the drivers behind. (*)
Drivers who don't use full beam when it is safe/considerate to do so (ie
when there's nothing in front of them) which makes it more difficult to see
where the road ahead of them goes when you want to overtake them. I tend to
put my beam on as soon as I'm level with the car, so at least *I* can see
where the road goes beyond the distance that their dipped headlights lights
(*) I was once stuck in a long queue of traffic that had been diverted
because the main road had been closed due to an accident. The diversion has
a staggered crossroads where all four roads are busy so it needs traffic
lights - but because it is staggered, the lights only let traffic in one
direction (as opposed to two facing directions) go at once, so queues
quickly built up. There were long period where the traffic was stationary,
and then occasions when everyone shuffled forward about 100 yards. The guy
in front of me kept his foot on his footbrake all the time he was
stationary, so all I could see was three big red blobs from his brake
lights. I put my sun visor down and closed my eyes. The light was so bright
even through my eyelids that I could see when they went out and knew that it
was safe to move forwards a bit. Even so, it was difficult to see the road
ahead for the first few seconds because my night vision had been "destroyed"
by the bright light and took a while to recover. I'm not sure whether he had
an automatic and was too lazy to put it into neutral and apply the handbrake
whenever he was stopped - after all, it was easy to work out that each time
we stopped it would be for at least a minute. I suffered in silence because
I didn't want to cause conflict, but eventually the guy behind me (who could
see the brake lights through my windscreen) leapt out and yelled "For F's
sake take your foot off the brake when you've stopped", and I heard a few
cheers from other drivers behind me ;-) The offender decided to play silly
buggers so he then took to doing an emergency stop whenever he got close to
the car in front - luckily I wasn't too close when he first did it, and I
was wise to his little game after that. I resisted the temptation (and it
was hard to resist!) to put my headlights on full beam so *he* would be
dazzled like he was doing to me.
Theoretically red light should leave *night vision* unaffected as the
rods are only sensitive by and affected by blue-green light (which is
why red lights are used in submarine cabins - to retain vision for the
periscope at night). I suspect that there is too much light during
normal driving to need the rods: and your blue sensitive cones should be OK.
That’s more evidence that there is something unusual
about your eyes. The driver of the car you are passing
can obviously see where they are going but you need
more light there.
Since you made the original comment I have never
been dazzled by those who keep their foot on the
brake when stopped at lights at night,
That’s more evidence that your eyes take longer than normal to adjust.
I've never had that effect and have never had to
close my eyes when stopped in traffic and almost
no one here doesn’t keep their foot on the brake
when stopped at traffic lights at night.
On Saturday, February 8, 2020 at 5:39:24 AM UTC+11, Rod Speed wrote:
I had a similar red rear light persistance in my eyes while waiting at traf
Turned out that I am the right candidate for Cataract surgery, and I got do
ne on both eyes. Everything is hunky dory ever since. Infact I was missing
some colours before the operation !
Interesting. I was told last time I had an eye test that
I would need cataract surgery and the optometrist
was very pushy about getting an appointment with
a medical professional. I don’t have any real symptoms
at all except that I do find that I find walking into the
sun not as convenient as it used to be and have noticed
that I see better with the sun visor down when driving.
Don’t get that stop light effect tho and I have looked
for it since the comments on here showed up too.
My car has an "auto hold" feature, where it keeps brake pressure applied
once you take your foot off the brake, my previous card had it too.
The old car turned the brake lights off while held, so I made a point of
taking my foot off the brake pedal, and do the same with the new car,
but I've realised that the new one keeps the brake lights on until I
touch the accelerator to move off again :-(
I've had the opposite. Drivers who insist on driving on main beam when
you are in front of them, but not very close. When I've been in my
kit-car, letting them catch up has worked wonders - the body, including
the rear panel, is mirror-finish stainless-steel!
I don’t do the milage I used to since I retired but my solution to that
was to install a spare rear view mirror on the top of the dash facing
forward, most of the time it was angled well down but get somebody keeping
their brake lights on too long it was easy to adjust so it reflected the
red glare back into their car .
That entirely depends on the type of headlight. Projector types - with a
bulls eye in front of the bulb - are very tolerant of bulb type.
Tungsten, HID or LED all give a similar and well controlled beam pattern.
You'll see that demonstrated on U Tube if you're interested.
*Errors have been made. Others will be blamed.
Dave Plowman firstname.lastname@example.org London SW
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