Over recent weeks, I’ve been approached by several residents of Cowick who have suggested that street lighting throughout the city appeared dimmer than they had perceived in previous years.
I’ve been told by Devon County Council that the street lights could be dimmer for a number of reasons.
The maintenance budget for the Street Lighting team has been severely reduced, in recent years. As a result, the period between routine maintenance attendances has been extended as a cost reduction exercise, meaning that the lamps be replaced as frequently as they used to be. This obviously means that lamps are having to run for longer periods, sometimes to failure. Street lights may therefore be appearing to generally be dimmer,due to the fact that lamps do not emit as much light nearer to the ends of their functioning lives.
Under pressure to investigate methods of reducing energy consumption and DCC’s carbon footprint, some lower wattage lamps have been being trialled around the county of Devon. In some areas, 45w Cosmopolis (white light lamps) have been trialled and these have generally been well accepted. These brighter than the generally used 70w SON (orange light lamps), they are also presently more expensive as they are a relatively newish technology, so their installation has now been reduced.
A 50w SON lamp is also being trialled, as an energy reducing measure and these too have been well accepted, as there appears to be hardly any visible reduction of light being emitted.
Perhaps I should ask them to investigate LED technology!