10.1% of vehicles checked in a recent study across ten major UK cities was found to have a failed headlight, sidelight, rear or brake-light. A proportion equating to some 2.6 million vehicles on UK roads right now.
The scale of the problem is also reflected in MOT failure rates with 1.16 million cars tested in 2012 falling short of required standards because of the condition of their lights.
Glasgow fared worst in the study, with just under one in eight of vehicles (13.3%) having defective lights. Newcastle was a close second with 13.1% of cars observed with blown bulbs. London proved to have the best maintained vehicles with just 6.8% revealed with faulty lights.
Latest figures from the Department of Transport, compiled from police records, show that in 2010 357 accidents were blamed on vehicles not displaying lights at night or in poor visibility. Over 25,000 accidents were the result of drivers misjudging other vehicles’ speed, often as a result of failing to slow down.
Besides the dangers, the penalty for the offence is £60 and three points for those caught breaking the law.
Replacing bulbs is more complicated than ever on modern vehicles so drivers are advised to contact their local garage for advice.