Bill Pownall, Norwich Union’s motor risk manager, said: “The problem appears to be mainly due to driver error, rather than defective equipment and none of the cases recorded involved drivers forgetting to switch off their high-beam when traffic was approaching.
“With the clocks having changed in October, drivers will be spending more time behind the wheel in the dark. Being dazzled by other motorists is not only a nuisance; it can be a serious danger.”
Many cars on Britain’s roads currently feature headlights that can be manually adjusted to suit different load conditions.
“According to our research many drivers are failing to adjust these settings under certain circumstances, and as a result are dazzling other road users.
“Not only is visibility seriously impaired, but oncoming motorists may feel the need to brake suddenly, with possible consequences for both oncoming and following traffic.”
“Drivers should maintain the same ‘beam level’ even when the angle of the car itself has altered slightly due to the presence of rear seat passengers or heavy items being carried in the boot.
“Drivers should regularly check their vehicle lights are functioning properly, including keeping them clean. Windscreens should also be kept clean and streak free, inside and out, to minimise the effects of dazzle when it occurs.”
Bill Pownall continues: “Road users should be taking extra care as analysis by Norwich Union has shown that the number of motor collision claims went up by 15% after the clocks go back.”