LED Lighting For Public Rest Area Safety

- Jul 12, 2019-

Vehicles might contain valuable personal property, and pedestrians might be fatigued or inattentive after a long drive, increasing the risk that both the vehicles and their occupants will be targets for criminals. Public rest areas are often exposed to harsh and varying environmental conditions. LED lighting can help facility planners address these safety concerns.

Initially, LED lighting can improve and increase the illumination in all parts of a public rest area. Standard outdoor lighting might create shadows and dark spots as lights overlap or fail to reach the edges of a rest area. A driver whose vehicle is in a shadow might fail to notice a pedestrian who is walking through a shadow, which increases the risk of accidents. LED light fixtures are available with lenses and other systems that give near-pinpoint control over where their illumination is cast. A properly designed LED rest area lighting system will generate a uniform and consistent pattern of light across the rest area, eliminating the accident and collision risks from shadows and dark spots.

Improved lighting at public rest areas will also help individuals in those areas to feel safer and more secure, with less fear that danger might be lurking in the shadows. There may be some debate over whether improved lighting has any correlation with a reduction in crime, but the fact remains that individuals are more likely to use a public facility if they feel safer there, and ample lighting communicates a feeling of safety. More legitimate traffic through a public rest area will reduce the likelihood of a dangerous encounter that might occur with smaller numbers of users. LED lighting can create a better impression that a public rest area is safe, which will then become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Entities that operate public rest areas are often under pressure to reduce operating costs, which might cause them to reduce illumination and other services to save utility expenses. LED lighting generates the same or better illumination than traditional metal halide or high pressure sodium lighting with less than half of the electricity consumption. This will allow public rest area operators to keep those areas well-lit at all times to further improve both the impression of safety and the actual safety and security of the area.

Light systems in many public areas, including parking lots and roadside facilities, can become damaged from environmental factors, careless drivers, and other similar hazards. LED lighting systems can be configured to give feedback to a central control room regarding the status of individual fixtures and the need for any maintenance. Further, modular LED light systems allow repair and replacement of individual light fixtures with no interruption of operation of other fixtures. Easier and quicker maintenance and repair gives public area operators a better opportunity to keep those areas well-lit and safe.

Lastly, LED lights have unparalleled performance characteristics for public area safety. They come to full illumination almost immediately after they are powered on. Next generation LED lights are available in multiple colors and temperatures to generate light that is an optimal fit for any public area with a maximum of safety. Central control systems give operators advanced control flexibility over zones and individual lights, allowing adjustments and fine tuning that was previously unavailable. Public rest areas that incorporate CCTV security cameras will see improved imaging and visibility on camera images as LED lights create better characteristics for camera imaging.