Recent research shows that many vehicle headlights, including halogen bulbs, high intensity discharge (HID) bulbs, and light-emitting diode (LED) lights, are ineffective in several different real-world situations. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), headlights play a vital part to vehicle safety, an often overlooked feature. Many vehicle fatalities occur at night, where visibility is much worse.
Studies also show that headlights are helpful during the day. Having daytime running lights equipped on a vehicle greatly improves visibility of the car. According to recent statistics, car accidents decrease by 10 percent when daytime running lights are used, and pedestrian accidents decrease by over 12 percent.
Which Headlights are Safe to Use?
The use of headlights is important, but the type and quality must be considered. Some standard options include:
Halogen Bulbs: Tested halogen headlights can illuminate an object up to 300 feet, giving the driver enough time to make an emergency stop if they are travelling approximately 40 miles per hour. Switching to high beams with halogen lights increases safety by 28 percent, with a safe travelling distance close to 50 miles per hour. Halogen headlights are found in about 80 percent of all cars.
HID Bulbs: HID headlights, when tested similarly as halogen bulbs, reveal objects up to 400 feet away, allowing safe speeds of 45 miles per hour. High beams with HID bulbs allow up to 55 miles per hour.
LEDs: LED headlights are newer in the auto market and provide a range of 450 feet, with safe speeds over 50 to 60 miles per hour.
Headlights should be serviced on a regular basis. Headlight assemblies are made of plastic materials that will deteriorate and produce a foggy glaze, reducing the effectiveness of the light beams. Experts recommend having headlights checked and cleaned on a regular basis. Only 20 percent of drivers regularly maintain headlights. Additionally, more than 60 percent of drivers in the United States do not use their high beams on a regular basis.
Although auto lighting has drastically improved with the introduction of HID headlights and LED headlights, they are still too new to be fully implemented in all vehicles.
Are There Guidelines for Headlights?
Several traffic and safety organizations are pushing for updated, mandatory headlights and guidelines for vehicle manufacturers. Traffic organizations also call for mandatory daytime running lights since not all vehicles are equipped with them.
Media Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Protect Clients Injured by Negligent Drivers
Although modern vehicles are equipped with improved safety equipment, including headlights, accidents still occur. If you were injured by a negligent driver, contact a Media car accident lawyer at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello. Call us at (610) 892-4940 or complete our online form for a free consultation. Located in Media, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lancaster, Montgomery County, Norristown, Philadelphia, Reading, and West Chester, Pennsylvania.