Car safety lights claim challenged

Claims that road safety is improved by vehicles having lights on all the time have been challenged by a Tory Euro MP.

EU Industry Commissioner Gunter Verheugen has said: "Daytime running lights (DRL) will make a positive contribution to our goal of reducing fatalities on European roads whilst being more fuel efficient then existing lights."

The Commission's aim is to have daytime lights on new cars and small vans from February 2011, and on lorries and buses 18 months later.

But Conservative transport spokesman in the European Parliament Timothy Kirkhope said too much light could distract drivers and put cyclists and pedestrians at greater risk.

He said: "When the Commission first mooted compulsory daytime running lights, MEPs were inundated with letters from cyclists concerned that daytime lights would make it more difficult for them to be seen.

"If all cars have lights on, there is a concern that drivers start looking out for lights, rather than pedestrians or cyclists."

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