Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

laser_jock99

Switching off street lights led to a big rise in injuries and fatalities

Recommended Posts

....according to the AA

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2609277/Switching-street-lights-save-money-led-big-rise-injuries-fatalities-according-new-figures.html?ITO=1490&ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490

I'd be interested to see the real data behind this "research" . The AA have always been against plans to turn off any street lighting. Seems they don't think it's natural to have darkness at night? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

....according to the AA

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2609277/Switching-street-lights-save-money-led-big-rise-injuries-fatalities-according-new-figures.html?ITO=1490&ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490

I'd be interested to see the real data behind this "research" . The AA have always been against plans to turn off any street lighting. Seems they don't think it's natural to have darkness at night? 

i find that hard to believe, i think the councils will blame anything, people should walk and drive with there eyes open anyway and theres to many people in this country anyway. good find though laser jock

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't get it. People go out at night, and this is personal experience of around here, walking down dark country lanes, dressed in black, with no torches. It's as if they want to be injured! No one seems to know what: 1. a torch is anymore 2. common sense is, and 3. personal responsibility is.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe someone should point out to the AA that all cars have headlamps...

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Firstly, if this data is indeed true and indicative of a trend towards higher mortality where lights are switched off, I would not want to put my hobby before peoples lives.

I do think though that a lot of the time these institutions and reports fail to address the biggest cause and that is simply "very bad drivers" and people taking silly/stupid risks.

Tailgating for one, is in my opinion, at epidemic proportions in the UK, I drive at the speed limit all the time (well, as close as can be, given gradients etc, never more than a few mph either side) constantly scanning ahead and behind. On every journey, I will without fail, get some frustrated person who wants to get home/to destination 10 seconds quicker sitting a few feet from my rear number plate. If any of you reading this are one of those people, I am a hypocrite, when I was younger I used to hammer about like no tomorrow. However, I grew up and realised that I would not for a single second want to explain to a family why, who's child I had hit, that I had taken a family member off them simply because I wanted to get home a few minutes quicker, or was "having fun".

Perhaps if we could reach a compromise and channel part of the "lights off" money savings back into night time driver education we could prepare for what will inevitably be the way of things to come, as energy becomes more and more expensive and hard to supply (Fracking not withstanding).

I think I read somewhere recently that Denmark are experimenting with glow in the dark traffic markings, maybe this will be a valid solution long term?

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suspect its selective data. I wouldn't have thought that many had gone off in 2011 2012, and if such data was available I would have thought the anti part night lighting brigade would have pounced on it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone else noticed the decline in the use & replacement of Cats Eyes over

the years too? In fact road markings in general have been allowed to fade & fall into disrepair.

I find it much easier to see the road layout with just headlights & proper road markings than try to distinguish poorly marked out roads through the glare & washed out details due to bad street lighting !

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Everyone knew we were on to a losing battle when it came to this.They turn the lights out and people don't adjust their driving accordingly so ofcourse accidents will rise.the figures sho though that accidents haven't risen as such the trend of falling accidents has just slowed down.end of the day I love my hobby but it's not worth someone's life!!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Obviously I have no idea to the accuracy of my following statement other than I read it on the internet (so a virtual case of "A bloke down the pub told me"). For all intents and purposes it seems that roughly one third of VED and associated taxes/duties actually ends up spent on roads and transportation.

If this figure had been 100%, who knows what might have transpired data wise after switch offs, you make a good point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is very much an abuse of bull basically, head out of most towns to the countryside and hey presto, they don't even bother with street lights apart from the odd villages, even the majority of motorways once in the country don't have night lighting. By all means have some in danger spots or within areas where children need to cross etc, but just flooding places to extreme is both environmentally unfriendly and worst of all, it costs a fortune.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suspect its complete nonsense and scaremongering. The lights go off after mid-night when there's far less traffic on the road, if it's darker and you can't see as well you're natural inclination is to be more careful. It's no different to heavy rain, fog, ice or snow. Whenever you're going from a to b it's not usually on totally lit up main roads, and as knobby says, cars have head lights.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel the authorities in this country have an indifferent attitude to road safety.

As though a certain percentage of fatalities are acceptable.

Accidents don't just happen, they happen for a reason, often stupidity and they can be avoided in most cases.

I drive country roads and have often been a matter of seconds away from serious crashes, none of my doing.

I really do not care to meet my death in the form of a bug eyed teenager, frothing at the mouth as he piles into the bonnet of my families car or likewise some feckless, selfish,impatient bufoon appearing through my rear window after tailgating me into the path of a stag crossing the road .

All this kind of nonsense could be avoided if we had a properly instilled sense of common decency, which should have been fostered years ago.

Instead I have to watch people in their 50s 60s and 70s behaving with casual disregard for speed limits and other folks lives.

It's not just teenagers.

It's nothing to do with street lighting, it's to do with thought for others.

And the Daily Fail can take a running leap as well.

But ultimately it is the fault of the law makers and leaders, death on the roads can be avoided and stopped......if there is the will to do so.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel the authorities in this country have an indifferent attitude to road safety.

As though a certain percentage of fatalities are acceptable.

Accidents don't just happen, they happen for a reason, often stupidity and they can be avoided in most cases.

I drive country roads and have often been a matter of seconds away from serious crashes, none of my doing.

I really do not care to meet my death in the form of a bug eyed teenager, frothing at the mouth as he piles into the bonnet of my families car or likewise some feckless, selfish,impatient bufoon appearing through my rear window after tailgating me into the path of a stag crossing the road .

All this kind of nonsense could be avoided if we had a properly instilled sense of common decency, which should have been fostered years ago.

Instead I have to watch people in their 50s 60s and 70s behaving with casual disregard for speed limits and other folks lives.

It's not just teenagers.

It's nothing to do with street lighting, it's to do with thought for others.

And the Daily Fail can take a running leap as well.

But ultimately it is the fault of the law makers and leaders, death on the roads can be avoided and stopped......if there is the will to do so.

Well perhaps you could reduce death on the roads, but you won't iradicate them any more than you could get rid of crime. Although this is nothing to do with street lights.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How many times in built-up areas with streetlights do you see drivers with no lights on - totally reliant on streetlights and too stupid to notice they are driving 'dark'.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suspect its selective data. I wouldn't have thought that many had gone off in 2011 2012, and if such data was available I would have thought the anti part night lighting brigade would have pounced on it.

You don't need to do any analysis more clever than "lol daily mail".  You're right of course, there are all sorts of statistical shenanigans a person can pull to support their own position, and it crumbles whenever someone looks at the original data. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Daily Mail ......... nuff said   :rolleyes:  :rolleyes:

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Trouble is people wear dark clothing, I cannot really take up residence on a soap box as I am the same. And the claim cars have headlights just doesn't work, people are damn hard to see when in dark clothing even with headlights on and I fitted the 50% extra ones also. Black is black because it does not reflect light = you do not see them.

I know of 2 deaths where the coroner has specifically said that switching off of the street lights has contributed. In one incidence the police had to ask the council for the lights to be turned on to find the body.

Yes, stupidity comes into it, unfortunately on both sides. Pedestrians walk out forgetting they are difficult to be seen. Cars can see nothing and so think they have a clear road.

One slightly crazy thing I have found is that walking on a pavement in the dark is "difficult" they go up and down and you stumble around a lot, it is actually easier and less bother to walk on the road. So perhaps more people are finding the same and putting themselves in the wrong place.

Edited by ronin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find driving in the dark and I mean pitch black, much safer, when you can see an approaching car miles away, there are no nasty surprises.

I would say the same would apply when you are on foot and if you are unable to avoid a car with its lights on then you are either very drunk or it amounts to a form of natural selection.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are fighting a losing battle to be honest.

In my opinion the answer is a compromise. Lights are required, but not at the same frequency / brightness all through the night.

Properly shielded lights, that dim to 25% brightness at midnight - 5 am (or similar).

They have just replaced the street lights where I live and although they are better (with regard to light going up), I can still clearly see the light from an upstairs window which is above the light.

Maybe we should turn our efforts to education via out reach programs? If we can get the kids involved and interested maybe things will improve, because there will be an interest and apatite for the night sky.

The parents are not worth bothering with, they have no interest and probably never will.

Ant

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can someone please tell me why the

riders of horses, don't were Hi Vis

jackets.Night mare trying to see

them at dusk.

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's the Daily "We'll all be murdered in our beds" Wail. Say no more.

We are a diurnal primate with rubbish night vision and millions of years evolution of being hunted by predators that have superb night vision. We're bound to have a fear of the dark.

This is just the latest manifestation of that.

Lighting should be used sparingly and only where absolutely needed. I do think more road safety awareness should be taught in schools (And not "stranger danger" paranoia), replacing some of the more rubbish stuff clogging up the curriculum.

In driving lessons, driving at night and adverse conditions, should be mandatory, as it should in the test. In my grumpier moments I think males should not be allowed to drive until 25, or at least when testosterone has dropped to non-lethal levels.

Oh, and ban the Daily Wail :evil:

Added smiley.

Edited by DaveS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When did leaving street lights on all the time start? I can remember when they were always switched off at around 0030/0100hrs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suspect the data is correct and not a daily mail scaremongering news item. The Daily Mail, in this case, is just reporting what the Times had already reported. The Times in turn was basing their assessment on data provided by the Department of Transport. Unfortunately while the Times article offered a link to the source data that link didn't work on my tablet but the DoT should be pretty good at statistical analysis so I suspect the analysis is correct. Is it worth putting on street lights to reverse that trend? In the short term yes the data clearly supports street lighting but is the underlying cause poor driver and pedestrian behaviour where both parties behave as they would if there was street lighting. In the longer term street lighting encourages that behaviour over personal responsibility. Is that a trade off that is worth accepting in exchange for lower accident rates? Personally I'd say it's not, individual responsibility is too valuable to surrender for perceived safety. But that's a personal attitude and the decision is one for society en masse.

I suspect the only useful response we could offer as astronomers to that article is to highlight that it is a campaign for dark skies not necessarily a campaign for dark streets.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a great believer in natural selection too.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.