Fleet Equipment asked Brett Johnson, president and chief executive officer of Optronics International, what fleets can do to enhance safety through lighting. Here is what he had to say:
“LED lighting is one of the most important advancements in trailer safety. Not only is LED lighting more reliable, its light quality is far superior to incandescent lighting.
“LED illumination approximates the color temperature of natural sunlight, the light the human eye has evolved to prefer.
“The ratio of LED lamp sales vs. incandescent lamp orders by OEM is now surpassing 90% vs. 10%. There is a clear and decisive move toward LED lamps over incandescent lamps across the board in the commercial vehicle arena and this includes tractors, trailers and work trucks.
“The OEM trend toward LED lighting is also driving the replacement market, though the aftermarket is hindered by the fact that many vehicles originally equipped with incandescent lamps are still in service today, and some people don’t realize that replacement LED lamps are generally as easy as plug and play.
“As for what you can do to improve safety: on vehicle exteriors, I would suggest a focus on vehicle conspicuity and work lamps.
“I would only use LED stop/tail/turn and marker lamps and if that means converting existing trailers to LED, I would do so. I would not have unreliable incandescent lamps on any vehicle in a fleet I managed.
“For hook-up lamps, work lamps and scene lights, I would only use LED lamps, and I would make sure that any work areas around a vehicle had bright white LED lighting for the work to be done there.
“I would suggest fleets regularly inspect and replace conspicuity tape, as it loses its reflective qualities over time.
“Inside trailers, again, I would use only reliable LED lamps and make sure that each trailer is adequately lit.
“I think that as time progresses, the use of sensor-activated lighting will become the norm. This means that whenever workers are present, lights are on.”
For more on this topic, check out The importance of electrical wiring and Commercial vehicle battery testing and maintenance.
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