With reduced daylight hours and worsening weather conditions, the British winter ramps up the risks that are posed to road users.
Research by the RAC Foundation records a 5.1% rise in accidents on UK roads after the clocks ‘go back’ in October. The most dangerous time is between 5 pm and 8 pm as commuter journeys are done in darkness.
The increased risks are caused by a deadly combination of reduced daylight hours and adverse weather conditions. It’s why RoSPA leads the campaign to scrap the British Summer Time (BMT) clock change.
Highway Care has launched the ‘Seen and Safe’ campaign to help protect road workers and users this winter by highlighting some simple, practical ways to improve highway safety.
This includes improving the visibility of commercial vehicles in low-light conditions, particularly those which are slow-moving or making frequent stops. This is what the Mini Light Arrow (MLA) is designed to do.
Here’s a closer look:
What is the Mini Light Arrow (MLA)?
The MLA is an illuminated sign to help ensure that traffic management and road maintenance vehicles are clearly visible to other road users. The standard version uses 13 LED lamps to display a flashing arrow to alert approaching traffic to the presence of a slow/stationary vehicle, a hazard or closed lane.
It’s designed for smaller sized working vehicles and particularly suited to maintenance vehicles such as road sweepers, drainage lorries or highway service trucks. The face of the sign measures 1,045mm x 1,045 mm and the installed weight is just 25kg to minimise the impact on fuel efficiency.
The MLA is powered via the vehicle battery and a handset pad is used to control the display with the options of a left/right flashing arrow or a 4-hold hazard warning.
What options are available?
The MLA is available in two configurations, there’s a standard 13 lamp set-up and a 15 lamp version to deliver increased visibility. It can also be fitted with a mounting device that allows the sign to be raised and lowered, controlled from the cab.
The MLA can be raised from horizontal using an electric motor or lifted vertically using a hydraulic system. The vertical life version allows it to be stowed neatly behind a vehicle’s bulkhead to reduce the potential aerodynamic drag.
How does MLA improve safety?
Improving the visibility of commercial vehicles is a fundamental part of collision management with the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS) emphasising the importance of visibility in reducing the risks.
The Mini Light Arrow provides a simple and effective way to alert road users to working vehicles and approaching road hazards. Without effective measures, poor quality lighting during the winter months will reduce the stopping sight distance (SSD) of approaching motorists.
The longer it takes for a motorist to be alerted to potential dangers, the less time they have to take effective action. The MLA provides a long-distance warning of what’s ahead with lights that are designed to be clear in low-light conditions without creating glare.
What safety accreditations does the MLA have?
The Mini Light Arrow has been tested to ensure it meets all the requirements of the Department for Transport guidelines (GT50/198/0065) as well as being TOPAS (Traffic Open Products and Specifications) 2516B registered.
What about maintenance?
There’s not much that can go wrong with the MLA with the LEDs easily replaceable. If there are any problems, however, it has a three-year warranty, service and 24/7 breakdown cover provided by Aftercare Response.
Get your MLA discount today!
In support of our ‘Seen and Safe’ campaign, Highway Care are offering a 20% discount on the MLA 13 range for any orders placed before December. For more info, call us on +44 (0) 344 840 0088 and quote 'MLA20' or email us directly.