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How does bright sunlight factor into car accidents?

California has a reputation for sunny weather, which may appeal to those worried about snow, rain and other weather factors known to make visibility difficult. Granted, the Golden State may experience fog and rain that could make driving conditions dangerous. Drivers should not overlook the risks associated with sunny weather since light has its hazardous components too.

Sunlight may present visual impairments

When a driver takes to the road on a bright day, the light could pierce through the windshield and present problems. If the light gets into a driver’s eyes, he or she may end up impaired enough to cause an accident. Even a slight amount of blinding by the light could contribute to a crash.

A driver need not travel at high speeds on the highway to cause severe injuries or fatalities. Momentary blindness in a residential area could lead to hitting a pedestrian, for example.

In some cases, the driver may not be at fault. That said, drivers who assume sunlight provides a “catch-all” excuse to avoid negligence claims may not be mistaken. Other factors come into consideration when figuring out what caused the crash.

Contributing factors and driver negligence

Vehicle owners have a responsibility to care for their cars. Was the sun visor damaged? Is the windshield displaying severe cracks? Such things could hamper visibility even further when dealing with excess sunlight and other visual impairments. Driving a vehicle with such defects could increase the potential for an accident. The same could be said about a car with bad brakes or other mechanical defects.

How the driver operated the vehicle may fall under scrutiny. A driver that sped beyond posted limits or committed other moving violations may find him or herself in legal trouble. Such negligent actions may become worse due to light blindness, but they represent negligence without issues with light. Distracted and drowsy driving and driving under the influence receive no passes because of sunlight either.

Many actions, behaviors and circumstances could contribute to a motor vehicle accident (MVA). When negligence ranks among the causes, a lawsuit may follow. Injured parties could speak to a personal injury attorney.

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