Modern car headlamps can be too bright and can dazzle other road users as a result, according to RAC, an automotive body in the United Kingdom, as reported by The Telegraph. The automotive body reported that 15% of drivers have encountered a near-miss due to being dazzled by said headlamps, and a United Nations working group has been set up to explore the possible factors.
The rise in popularity of LED lights in automobiles was likely due to the perceived brightness offered. “LED light is more directional. Rather than being big spread of light which comes from a halogen bulb, LED light is more focused. It is also a traditionally brighter light which appears as blue white, hence why it appears brighter in the dark,” said Stephen Dixon, a lighting expert at the Quality Light Source Factory.
The RAC also chimed in. “The intensity and brightness of some new car headlights is clearly causing difficulty for other road users. Headlight technology has advanced considerably in recent years, but while that may be better for the drivers of those particular vehicles, it is presenting an unwanted, new road safety risk for anyone driving towards them or even trying to pull out at a junction,” said spokesman Pete Williams.
Drivers also find it very distracting when they have to contend with being dazzled by bright lights in their rear view mirrors, Williams continued. “While regulations specify that all types of dipped headlights must fall between a maximum and minimum luminosity the night-time driving experience of motorists of all ages is very different with many saying dipped beams of some modern vehicles are too bright,” he added.
That said, there will be forthcoming dialogue on this subject. “We look forward to seeing the progress of the United Nations’ vehicle lighting working group in April,” Williams said. Closer to home, we’re certainly no stranger to LED headlamps and other high-intensity discharge variants.
We’ve all surely been dazzled by said type of headlamps at least once. What are your thoughts on this, dear readers? Where should legislation sit?