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See and be seen!

2nd December 1999
Page 25
Page 25, 2nd December 1999 — See and be seen!
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In addition to the obligatory and other lights described as being required for most vehicles last month (CM 4-11 November), the lighting regulations require specific goods vehicles and trailers to be fitted with additional lights and reflectors mainly to emphasise their size and length. SIDE MARKER LAMPS Side marker lamps must be fitted on vehicles and trailers as follows: I) Post-April 1991 vehicles over Gm long: • one lamp on each side within 4m of the front • one lamp on each side within tin of the rear • additional lamps on each side at 2m intervals (or if impracticable, 4m).

z) Vehicles (including a combination of vehides) over 18.3m long (including the length of the load): • one lamp on each side within 9.15m of the front • one lamp on each side within 3.o5m of the rear • additional lamps on each side at 3.05m intervals between front and rear side marker lamps.

3) Vehicles in combination between 12.2 metres and 18.3m long (but not articulated vehicles) carrying a supported load: • one lamp on each side within r,53orrirn of the rear of the rearmost vehicle • one lamp on each side within 1,530mm of the centre of the load, if the load extends further than 9.15m to the rear of the drawing vehide.

4) Trailers more than 9.15 metres long (Gm for post-I October 1990 trailers): • one lamp on each side within 1,530mm of the centre of the trailer length.

These lamps must be positioned not more than 2,300mm from the ground and must be amber unless fitted within im of the rear when they may be red. Such lamps fitted to pre-i October 199o-built trailers may be white to the front and red to the rear.

END-OUTLINE MARKER LAMPS Post-April 199i vehicles and post-October 1990 trailers over 2,roomm wide must have two end-outline marker lamps visible from the front (white) and two visible from the rear (red)—more may be fitted—positioned no more than 400mm in from the outer edges of the vehide/traikr. Those at the front must be mounted at least level with the top of the windscreen.

OPTIONAL MAIN BEAM HEADLAMPS Any number of extra mainbeam headlamps (including spot/driving lamps) may be fitted with no restriction on their use except that they must not cause dazzle.


Two optional front fog lights may be fitted, but not more than 400mm from the side of the vehide and not above I,200MM from the ground.

SWIVELLING SPOTS (WORK LAMPS) White swivelling spotlights mounted on vehicles may be used only at the scene of an accident, breakdown or roadworks to illuminate the working area. They must not cause undue dazzle or discomfort to other drivers.


Amber warning beacons are compulsory on vehicles which cannot exceed 25mph when using unrestricted dual-carriageways, except when crossing the carriageway in the quickest manner practicable.

These beacons may be fitted: • to vehicles used at the scene of an emergency • when it is necessary or desirable to warn of the presence of a vehicle on the road (eg Special Types vehicles carrying abnormal loads) • to breakdown vehicles used at the scene of accidents and breakdowns and when towing broken-down vehicles.

Medical practitioners registered with the General Medical Council when travelling to or dealing with an emergency may use green warning beacons on vehicles. Blue warning beacons and other special warning lamps may only be used on emergency vehicles.

In all cases beacons should be fitted with their centres at least 1, zo omm from the ground and visible from any point at a reasonable distance from the vehicle. The light itself must show not less than 6o and not more than 240 times per minute.


Vehicles and trailers must have two red reflex retro reflectors: • facing squarely to the rear • between 35omm and 9 oomm from the ground • within 4o omm of the outer edge of the vehicle or trailer • not less than 600mm apart • visible from an angle of 3o° on either side.

TRIANGULAR REAR REFLECTORS Triangular rear reflectors are no longer a mandatory requirement, but may be fitted voluntarily to trailers or broken-down vehicles being towed (but to no other vehicles).


Vehicles and trailers must have two amber side retro reflectors on each side, or more as necessary, fitted: • one on each side not more than im from the extreme rear; and • one not more than 4m from the front; with • others at minimum three-metre intervals (or, if not practicable, four-metre intervals); and • between 35omm and i,5oonun from the ground.

Where such reflectors are mounted within rrn of the rear of the vehicle/trailer they may be coloured red instead of amber.


Trailers built since i October 1990 must be fitted with two obligatory front retro reflectors, white in colour and mounted facing forwards: • between 35omm and 9oomm from the ground • not more than r5omm in from the outer edges of the trailer • at least 6 oomm apart.

U by David Lowe