Jump to content

sgl_imaging_challenge_2021_annual.thumb.jpg.3fc34f695a81b16210333189a3162ac7.jpg

New street lighting


russ
 Share

Recommended Posts

Just hoping someone can give me some advice.

We have just had some new street lighting installed right down our street and the adjoining street too. On Friday night they came on for the first time and i was seriously shocked. They have fitted white light to replace the old sodium and there is some form of limited shielding. But these lights are incredibly bright, i do not have the figure but they far outstrip a neighbours 500watt security light. These lights are so bright it hurts to look directly at them and they really do seem to recreate daylight conditions (do we actually need that level of lighting?). But the dome of light above each lamp is ultra depressing. I've sent an email to our Street Lighting section suggesting the lamps could be dimmed 50% and still be too bright.

Just when i thought things from the garden couldn't get any worse.

Does anyone else have these type lights installed? Are they incredibly bright in your area too?

Edited by russ
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The general concensus is that LED street lights are bad for astronomy due to the broad spectrum (white) light they emmit. White light is unfilterable unlike the relativley narrow bands emmitted by say the old sodium (orange) lights and others. The only hope for us is that the new LED lights are better directed - ie at the ground rather than all around- but don't be surprised if some cr*p designs soon appear.

On the issue of brightness this is rather worrying as a large proportion of light pollution is caused by scattered reflection off the ground (roads & pavements etc) so an overly bright source will cause more light pollution even if it is better shieled.

It might be worth noting to your council that you think they are way too bright and see if the level can be reduced to something more acceptable?

Edited by laser_jock99
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep got them here in Stretton there is one right in front of my house, never have to put the lights on in the front of the house there is enough light to read by coming in through the windows!

Yes, they are so bright i keep thinking someone has pulled up on the drive with their lights on full beam. Could almost get away with using no lights in the front rooms of the house.

On the issue of brightness this is rather worrying as a large proportion of light pollution is caused by scattered reflection off the ground (roads & pavements etc) so an overly bright source will cause more light pollution even if it is better shieled.

I think this is the main problem. The light is so intense that it's reflecting back off the road/footpath to create this mini dome of light.

A major problem for us astronomers is we are a minority and based on my street alone, it's a huge thumbs up from everyone i've spoken too. Not one person could see why i had an issue. My neighbour two doors down was so chuffed because the light was sufficient for him to do his front garden. And he hoped i wasn't going to rock the boat....hmm too late, already sent an email.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Perhaps remind the council that excessive light into your property is 'light trespass' and that light in the wrong places is 'pollution'.

You can set one department of the council against another by complaining about pollution. No instant fixes but in these financially tight times, any waste in a department is glaring incompetence.

If they have to go to the expense of shielding your property, they will soon learn.

Perhaps invite your local councillor to come to your front garden to read a newspaper at night? Not forgetting to invite the local paper as well. Better still read the council's plans to close libraries, etc. Very embarrassing for them.

Astronomers may be a minority. But if get help from people waving the ££ stick (every local taxpayer), we may get somewhere.

If we sit back and let this happen, UK astronomy will be restricted to watching TV and discussing things on SGL.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Write to your local MP immediately! Don't hang around. If people don't say anything, they will be rolling these things out everywhere. LED lights can be better shielded and they are dimmable. Things can be done about this--speak up! Also, contact the CFdS reps for your area: CfDS Local Officers

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The problem is that the majority of the public don't seem to see this as a problem, so politicians are hardly likely to act. Sad but true.

On the contrary, they perceive darkness as a negative thing, and lighting stops the baddies and enables everyday folk to do the gardening or whatever!

Edited by lukebl
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Really sorry to hear that. I haven't seen any of these new lights other than in photographs. They have changed the lighting on a few of the main roads in my town, but the newer lights are yellow, and seem to be less bright and well shielded above. I really don't understand the desire to turn night into day. It is too sad.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:Russ, you have my sympathy; i would complain away even if you are a lone voice. Iamjulian - there are some of these lights appearing in Shrewsbury now, mostly up in the residential streets of Ditherington and Harlescott where my brother in law lives; like Russ's neighbours, they all love them!! :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My MP (Chris Hulme) is not much help. I contacted him 2 years ago about the railway yard behind us and the ridiculous lighting they have. He didn't see there was a problem, nor did Eastleigh BC. I've written to the lighting engineer at Hampshire County Council but not expecting much. Have laid it on thick about light trespass though.

We had a slightly misty evening here yesterday and the light domes above these lights is pretty bad. But they are not too bad when the air is dry and the house shields the light. Just wondering whether in the long run they will be better, except on moist nights.

Edited by russ
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My local MP did see the problem and passed the letter I sent to Chris Huhne, Secretary of State for Energy. It is true that "most people" don't care about light pollution but it is not true that campaigning doesn't make a difference. There are plenty of examples that show that can help. If we don't speak up for ourselves, nobody else will. So to the OP--write your letters! I can send you copies of letters I have sent if you need them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Are there any official stats that show that crime etc. is not reduced by brighter ligher lighting? And by inference, won't get worse by having dimmer lighting? That seems to be the main argument of people near me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have one of these shining directly into my bedroom window, it is literally 2 feet from my window.

I take a baseball bat to it everytime I want to observe, knocks it out for a good few hours. I'm sorry, it might sound harsh but the council have repeatedly ignored my requests for a shade to be put on it.

Edited by nitram100
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The problem is that the majority of the public don't seem to see this as a problem, so politicians are hardly likely to act. Sad but true.

On the contrary, they perceive darkness as a negative thing, and lighting stops the baddies and enables everyday folk to do the gardening or whatever!

the irony is my friend had his side gate and 3 doors kicked in during the day as some piece of worthless scum decided to help themselves to his hard earned belongings.:hello2:

he lives on a respectable estate as well,the lights are just another token jesture a bit like the cctv! still better than having more police on the street or is that cheaper :hello2:

Edited by bunnygod1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Fitting them down my road this month, the leaflet they sent through my door reckoned there would be less light pollution overhead due to better shielding, i'll see if I can dig it out and see exactly what they claim...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have one of these shining directly into my bedroom window, it is literally 2 feet from my window.

I take a baseball bat to it everytime I want to observe, knocks it out for a good few hours. I'm sorry, it might sound harsh but the council have repeatedly ignored my requests for a shade to be put on it.

feel for you, but i had to laugh at that.:hello2:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ask your council to switch them off after 11pm, lots of other councils are doing this - there is after all no legal requirement to have them on in the first place. Its well worth dropping a email to your local Lighting Officer from the CfDS (BAA). Don't waste your time getting a petition together - but encourage as many separate letters to your local councilors/MP/MEP as you can get.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rik, would you say the observing situation is now better or worse compared to the old style lights?

Hopefully it will be possible to dim those lights still further after midnight. It's worth a shot.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i have the new street lights at the side of my house and they light up my garden i canot even see any stars to the south or west any more because of them and they are unshielded i got some mat black paint and intend to paint the sides of the glass shades if they wont shield them i will...

Link to comment
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
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.