Driving through fog can be scary and confusing. You’re having trouble seeing, so you think to turn on your high beams. But is that the best option? Will your high beams cut through the fog so you can see, or will they make it worse for you?
Before you drive through fog, you should know what types of beams to use so that you can avoid a collision at all costs. Let’s find out if you should use your high beams in fog, and if not, what types of beams you should use so you are as safe as possible.
Why Shouldn’t I Use High Beams in Fog?
To put it simply, no. You should not use high beams in fog. When you turn on your high beams in regular circumstances, the intense beams cut through the dark. However, when it’s foggy outside, there are suspended water particles in the air. If you turn on your high beams in the fog, the bright beams bounce off the water particles, and instead of becoming easier to see, it actually makes it much harder to see anything in front of you.
Emitting more light into fog makes it even more difficult to see anything in your path. While light doesn’t travel far in fog, when you use your high beams and the light is refracting to make it even harder to see, this can also be dangerous for other drivers, not just you. As other drivers get closer to you, your high beams and their low visibility can cause them to be unable to see in front of them.
When there’s fog on the road, it means that visibility is reduced. In situations of very dense fog, visibility could even be reduced to less than 500 feet. This means you have less time to spot another driver, an object in the road, or any other signs, traffic lights, or adjacent streets. Reducing that small distance even further by turning on your high beams is incredibly dangerous.
While high beams are great in times when nobody is approaching from the other direction, it’s very dark outside, and you want to see the road and potential objects in the road sooner than you might with regular beams, they can be incredibly dangerous when it’s foggy. Let’s take a look at what beams you should actually use in fog.
Headlights You Should Use in Fog
Instead of high beams, you should be using your low beams, or regular headlights in foggy weather conditions. Additionally, you should use your fog lights. Fog lights are not to be used in place of your regular headlights—they are intended to be used with those beams to improve visibility.
Fog lights aren’t brighter, they’re additional low beam lights that are located lower on your vehicle, below your regular headlights and typically mounted near your bumper. The location of fog lights allows them to focus the light on the road so you can better see the lines on the road and any other objects that could be obstructions.
Fog lights are more common on older vehicles, and many newer cars don’t have fog lights. These can be incredibly helpful when you’re driving in poor weather conditions like fog, and any other time when it’s difficult to see the road ahead of you. Their location and angle helps illuminate the road in ways the other headlights might not be able to.
It’s important to note that you should never use your fog lights on their own—they should always be used in addition to your regular headlights when necessary.
Other Tips for Driving Through Fog
Now that you know which headlight setting is best for driving through fog, it could be helpful to know other tips to stay as safe as possible while driving on a foggy day. Here are some of the most useful tips for driving through fog so that you know you’re being careful:
- Drive slowly and don’t speed.
- Follow the lines on the road and try to stay closer to the outside white line so you’re not in the middle of the street.
- Be prepared to brake at any time.
- Avoid any distractions, like loud music, using your cell phone, or talking to others in the car.
- Stay calm so you can make the correct decisions behind the wheel.
Like any other rules of the road or tips for driving safely, driving through fog requires caution and attention to what is happening. You need to be alert and ready to make quick decisions if you spot something dangerous.
Be sure to minimize all distractions so you can give your full attention to the area ahead of you so that you can safely navigate foggy weather conditions. Even when you’re being cautious and following these tips, though, it’s still possible that other drivers aren’t as experienced or don’t know how to drive in fog. That could lead to them colliding with you and causing a wreck, which is when you’ll need the help of a lawyer.
You Can Trust Our Attorneys at Shrager, Sachs, & Blanco
After getting into a car wreck that was caused by another driver, like when another driver is speeding in the fog and crashes into you, you could use the help of a car accident attorney. The other driver’s negligence is what caused your collision and all your damages. When you’ve been hurt and have suffered financial damages from the accident, you could be interested in taking legal action.
Our lawyers at Shrager, Sachs, & Blanco understand what you’re going through. We know you want to recover compensation for what you’ve suffered. Reach out to our office today so we can get started helping you recover what you’re owed.