There are many safety features on cars these days that help keep drivers and others on the road safe from accident injuries. Some of the most popular safety features available on vehicles include:

  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Backup cameras
  • Antilock brakes (ABI)
  • Electronic stability control (ESC)
  • Brake assist
  • Automatic emergency braking (AEB)
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Lane-keeping assist (LKA)
  • Blind spot warning (BSW)
  • Forward collision warning (FCW)

With all the new technological safety features, we tend to forget about some of the other safety features that keep us safe such as airbags and seat belts. Even less thought of are windshield wipers and headlights. However, without properly functioning windshield wipers and headlights, we would be unable to see the things ahead of us in time to slow down or take other action to avoid a collision. With this in mind, we want to take a closer look at how headlights are tested in the vehicle industry.

Headlight Testing

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) tests vehicles based on several criteria. One of those criteria is how effective a vehicle’s headlights are at night and in other situations. Last year, the IIHS released its findings from its first headlight tests. The ratings by the IIHS show that most headlights need improvements. The IIHS found that a vehicle’s cost did not necessarily guarantee that the headlights were adequate. Many of the luxury vehicles tested received a poor rating for headlights.

Only one of the 2016 midsize vehicles tested received a good rating — the 2016 Toyota Prius v. The Mercedes-Benz CLA and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class both received poor ratings.  You can check to see if the IIHS has tested your headlights and see your vehicle’s rating at the IIHS website.

Maintaining Safe Headlights

Because headlights play a vital role in preventing many car crashes, it is important to make sure your headlights are functioning properly. Lighting factors play a role in about one-half of traffic accidents, and about one-half of crashes take place on poorly lit or dark streets. Therefore, learning how to maintain your headlights can reduce your risk of being in a serious traffic accident.

According to Road and Travel Magazine:

  • Keep headlights free of debris and dirt. Clean headlights so that you have better visibility in poor weather conditions and at night.
  • Because most headlights dim over time, replace headlights on a regular basis instead of waiting until one burns out.
  • Replace both headlights at the same time to ensure even illumination. Uneven illumination can result in decreased visibility.
  • Check to ensure your headlights are properly adjusted. Headlights that are out of alignment reduce visibility and are a distraction to other drivers.
  • Check all lights on a regular basis to ensure they are properly working.

Remember, even a new car could have poorly performing headlights. Research your vehicle make and model to determine what you can do to increase headlight performance. It could save your life by preventing a traffic accident.

Call an Experienced NoLA Car Accident Attorney

Have you been injured in a Louisiana car accident? If so, our NoLA car accident attorneys want to help you recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

For a free legal consultation and no-obligation case evaluation, contact Attorney Fred Olinde of The Olinde Firm. You can contact our office by calling (504) 587-1440 or 1-800-587-1889 to request your free appointment with a NoLA car accident attorney.