The early mornings and late afternoons are a dangerous time for drivers. Those who drive directly in the sunlight may begin to suffer visual illusions, heightening their risk for a crash; in fact, bright sunshine increases the risk for a fatal car crash by 16 percent. With the following tips, drivers in California may better remain safe.

Wearing sunglasses is the first and perhaps most important step. These can reduce the amount of sun that reaches the eyes, and they even protect against harmful UV rays. Drivers should keep a pair in the vehicle. In addition, they should use the sun visors, which block sunlight on the front windshield and on the left and right side windows. All sun visors are designed so as not to impede drivers’ visibility.

For a few hundred dollars, drivers could have their windows tinted by a specialty auto repair shop. All states regulate the percentage of light that the tint must allow in, and police can issue fines for overly darkened windows.

Drivers should keep a greater distance from the vehicle in front since the bright rays could reduce reaction times. When the sun begins to hurt their eyes, drivers can exit the road and wait for the sun to reposition. If they can avoid heading out in the bright sunlight to begin with, they should do so.

Failing to take the bright sun into account can make drivers negligent. When negligence is behind a motor vehicle accident, those who are not at fault may be able to file a personal injury claim and be awarded damages that cover their medical expenses, lost wages, vehicle damage and other losses. A lawyer might assist by hiring investigators to gather proof, hiring medical experts to determine the extent of the injuries and negotiating for the settlement with the auto insurance company.