If you've ever taken a trip to the USA or Europe, you may have noticed most cars on the road have lights on during the day.
In fact, many use Daytime Running Lights (DRLs)
, which are bright, forward-facing lights, often fitted below the headlights, and designed to make vehicles more visible in the day.
It's a practice that can save many lives
, as even on sunny days, unlit vehicles can be difficult to spot. Research by the NRMA has found four out of five
daytime intersection collisions are caused, in part, by one road user failing to see another road user in time.
Click HERE to read a summary of international studies concerning DRLs
Overseas studies show that DRL's could help prevent anywhere between seven and 25 per cent of all fatal daytime crashes.
The greatest benefits are seen with more severe accidents, including head-on and intersection crashes, but they also make approaching vehicles far more visible for pedestrians, motorcyclists, and cyclists.
Other reported benefits include improved driver reaction times, and better estimation of speed and distance. DRLs also make vehicles appear closer, which means drivers are less likely to make risky manoeuvres at intersections.
While the specially designed DRLs are not yet a standard feature of all cars, you can still increase your visibility by using headlights.
How to Use Your Lights
• Switch on your low beam headlights, especially if you notice that other cars using them are more visible than unlit vehicles
• Some vehicles automatically turn off the headlights when the key is taken out of the ignition. If your car does this, consider leaving your headlights turned on permanently.
• Don't use fog lights. It is illegal to use them unless visibility is poor, as they can temporarily blind other motorists
• Avoid using parking lights when moving. They do little to improve your visibility particularly in bright conditions
Source: The Open Road Magazine / Published by the NRMA