LED street lighting is less safe

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Open letter to DRD and other officials:

Our street lights were replaced with the new LED lighting heads as part of the LED lighting pilot scheme in December.

Since then, the roads, footpaths and general area have been much darker, leaving complete black spots in areas where there was previously light with the old yellow sodium lighting.

While we appreciate this move is to save money, nevertheless a reduced level of lighting makes the environment more unsafe, increasing the risk of road accidents and crime. The former Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy stated in August 2015 that “it is important that every effort is made to make savings and reduce costs without impacting on the public”.

This current level of lighting has a significant negative impact on the public. I do not feel safe leaving my house in darkness now, so goodness knows how frightened the elderly feel.

To maintain the previous levels of lighting, either the LED heads would need to be changed for ones with greater output and area coverage, or more street lights would need to be added to each street (obviously a much greater cost).

Since the proliferation of LED lighting installation in the wider Lurgan area in recent weeks indicates that this pilot scheme is not going to be abandoned or reversed, can you please advise as to what changes will be made to reinstate lighting levels to the coverage made by yellow sodium lights and to reassure the public that their safety is more important than cost-cutting.

Vanessa Rivington, Dollingstown