Australian Trucking Association Shines Light on LED Lighting Safety Gains

Installing LED trailer brake lights could mean the difference between a safe stop and a rear end accident, the Chief Executive of the Australian Trucking Association, Christopher Melham, said today.

Melham was releasing the ATA’s new Technical Advisory Procedure on heavy vehicle electrical wiring, which includes guidance on trailer lighting system requirements. The advisory procedure was developed by the ATA’s Industry Technical Council.

LED lighting has been available for heavy vehicle use for some time. One of the benefits of these lights is that they light up faster than traditional incandescent bulbs,” Melham said.

“At 100 km/h, a LED brake light will come on 4.4 metres earlier than a comparable incandescent light.  This can easily be the difference between a rear-end crash and a near miss.

“But in order to achieve this safety gain, heavy vehicle wiring needs to be able to support these products.

“The ATA’s new technical advisory procedure provides in-depth guidance for trucking operators and workshops to make sure they are getting the most out of their truck’s electrical system.”

The advisory procedure includes extensive technical advice covering heavy vehicle wiring, lighting, voltage levels, connectors, alternators, batteries and the towing vehicle power source.

Melham said the document also provided specific advice on preventing electrical failures that could spark a heavy vehicle fire.

“As truck electrical systems continue to increase in complexity, there have been a worrying number of incidents where worn or incorrect electrical components have caused truck fires,” Melham said.

“Trucks and trailers often experience harsh conditions as they travel across Australia. We’ve listed the key areas that workshops and operators should check to make sure the truck electrical system stays safe and reliable throughout the vehicle’s lifetime.”

This is the latest in the ATA’s series of technical advisory procedures, which provide best practice guidance for trucking operators, maintainers and suppliers about key technical issues. The procedures are available for free from the ATA’s online resource library.

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