When communities consider LED lights for their streets, it’s usually the energy efficiency and long lifespan that drives the decision. Between reduced utility bills and labor costs for relamping, solid state technology is saving taxpayer money all over the globe. But the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance is setting out to prove that it may also save lives.
The NEEA, along with hundreds of energy and public safety groups on the West Coast, just wrapped up testing in Seattle to see how LED lights stack up against the existing high pressure sodium lights for nighttime visibility. Residents were recruited for object detection tests, as well as professional drivers in cars rigged with light measuring instruments. This video from the NEEA demonstrates some of the trials:
Since these LED street lights are engineered for a full spectrum of color, objects are rendered more accurately even in lower brightness. With higher visibility these streets are much safer for drivers and pedestrians alike. The NEEA’s tests have proven in favor of LED lighting, and Seattle is currently undergoing widespread adoption of the new technology in their street lamps. Click here for the conversion schedule.