Front and rear lights are required by law if you are cycling at night. More importantly, cycling at night with no lights makes you invisible to cars, greatly increasing the risk of collision.
Every year in the UK around 17,000 cyclists are killed or injured in reported road accidents, including around 2,500 who are killed or seriously injured. 20% of accidents involving cyclists occur at night.
- Cycle lighting in the UK is enforced by the Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations (1989).
- Compulsory lights and reflectors: you must fit a white front light, red rear light, red rear reflector, and amber/yellow pedal reflectors – front and back on each pedal.
- Lighting-up time is sunset or when visibility is seriously reduced.
- The most dangerous hours for cyclists are 8am-9am and 3pm-6pm on weekdays.
- Cycling accidents in the dark are more likely to be fatal.
- Cycle Safety: Lights and Reflectors @ kingston.gov.uk
Excerpt: Cycling in the dark without lights and reflectors puts you at great risk. Cyclists often see quite well when riding without lights due to street and shop lights but it can be almost impossible for drivers to see cyclists if they have not taken the correct safety measures for night time cycling.
- Cycling Accidents – Facts and Figures – February 2011 @ RoSPA
Excerpt: About one fifth of the cyclists killed and injured are children. Cycling accidents increase as children grow older, with 10 to 15 year old riders being more at risk than other age groups, including adults until about the age of 60 years. To some extent, this reflects increased cycling as children grow older followed by a switch to motorised transport from the late teens onwards. It also coincides with the age when children attend Secondary school, and may indicate riskier behaviour by this age group.
- Video: How much of this cyclist can you see in the sections without lights?