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Are LED Tunnel Lights Really Necessary


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Are LED tunnel lights really necessary or is it just a case of  brighter the light the dimmer the captain?

Obviously this question will upset some however after todays blinding experience it does raise  concern.

Early this afternoon we went through the Bosworth tunnel and whilst doing so we met a narrow boat coming towards us with a LED tunnel light.  Although the boat was 800m away from us the brightness of this light made it impossible for me to see where I was going unless I blocked the light with my hand. So here comes a happy chappy on his boat with enough light to illuminate Blackpool and all I can see is a bright light similar to the light an optician shines into your eye so they can see the back of your eyeball.

I slowed right down and was hard to the right to allow him to pass safely, then blow me down we heard the sound of metal against brick as he boat chiselled a new scar into the tunnel wall.

Not only that, he also had two additional LED lights just in front of the helmsman position.

As the boat went passed, being vey curious I looked back to see the benefits of the tunnel light and yes it lite the tunnel and yes you could see everything, however this is at the expense of boats coming towards not being able to see jack s**t!

So I ask the question again, are LED tunnel lights really necessary?

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I had an approaching boat wait at the mouth of a tunnel as he didn't know it was wide enough to pass. His led tunnel illumination system was still do bright from outside the tunnel to dazzle me and make it difficult to see where I was going. I did make it known to him that if he had entered the tunnel I would have had to stop due to his blinding light.

I think most are not aware their lights are so blinding as they are always behind them and think they are great.

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5 minutes ago, Andy Durnin said:

Are LED tunnel lights really necessary or is it just a case of  brighter the light the dimmer the captain?

Obviously this question will upset some however after todays blinding experience it does raise  concern.

Early this afternoon we went through the Bosworth tunnel and whilst doing so we met a narrow boat coming towards us with a LED tunnel light.  Although the boat was 800m away from us the brightness of this light made it impossible for me to see where I was going unless I blocked the light with my hand. So here comes a happy chappy on his boat with enough light to illuminate Blackpool and all I can see is a bright light similar to the light an optician shines into your eye so they can see the back of your eyeball.

I slowed right down and was hard to the right to allow him to pass safely, then blow me down we heard the sound of metal against brick as he boat chiselled a new scar into the tunnel wall.

Not only that, he also had two additional LED lights just in front of the helmsman position.

As the boat went passed, being vey curious I looked back to see the benefits of the tunnel light and yes it lite the tunnel and yes you could see everything, however this is at the expense of boats coming towards not being able to see jack s**t!

So I ask the question again, are LED tunnel lights really necessary?

No. Only possible advantages are bulb life and possibly cost. Disadvantages--See above

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Some of us have deteriorated eye sight. In poor lighting conditions I cannot judge sideways distances as I have triple vision. Yes, I have 72 watts of LED tunnel lights. They point starboard and up. If there is another boat coming I can turn them off but its not easy to see then.

 

There is no regulation about tunnel lights except that you have to have one so unfortunately us selfish boaters with LED lights or the idiots with vintage searchlights or massive brass car headlights can do what the heck we want. Could I suggest you try what I do and use a pair of sunglasses on such an occasion that your eyes will not adjust correctly in bright light?

 

Or maybe an automatic welding mask?

 

 

Edited by Tracy D'arth
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1 minute ago, Rebotco said:

Can't see its anything whatever to do with being LEDs.

Doesn't matter whether they are tungsten, halogen, fluorescent, sodium or anything else.

They are all just as dazzling if they are too bright and poorly angled.

LED are worse, as the light is direct and far brighter for less voltage. LED strobes are now used on night time battlefields to blind opposing forces.

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23 minutes ago, Hudds Lad said:

all the ones i’ve noticed fitted to boats seem to be facing dead ahead, perhaps thats part of the problem?

That would help

14 minutes ago, matty40s said:

I find this is getting more common, with some having 2 lights at the front!! Like you, I struggle with the oncoming boat, using umbrella or hat visor to protect eyes.

I have now started to keep a large LED work light at the back with me, if I really struggle, I direct it at the other boat and turn it on just before the boats meet.....usually to shoots and complaints as they lose their vision.

As we pass, I explain that I have had just that for the whole duration of them coming towards me.

Brilliant that’s what i shall do lol

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14 minutes ago, Tracy D'arth said:

Some of us have deteriorated eye sight. In poor lighting conditions I cannot judge sideways distances as I have triple vision. Yes, I have 72 watts of LED tunnel lights. They point starboard and up. If there is another boat coming I can turn them off but its not easy to see then.

 

There is no regulation about tunnel lights except that you have to have one so unfortunately us selfish boaters with LED lights or the idiots with vintage searchlights or massive brass car headlights can do what the heck we want. Could I suggest you try what I do and use a pair of sunglasses on such an occasion that your eyes will not adjust correctly in bright light?

 

Or maybe an automatic welding mask?

 

 

I have a story about me and the father in law going through a tunnel not realising we still had our sun glasses on

 

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2 minutes ago, Rebotco said:

So what?

cars are also 12 volt and a halogen headlight can dazzle you as much as an LED.

The voltage is as irrelevant as the fact that an LED is being singled out.

ALL lights, inappropriately powered can equally dazzle you.

People have said here on the Forum that LEDs are more dazzling than incandescent bulbs because the wavelength of their light destroys your night-vision

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20 minutes ago, Andy Durnin said:

Are LED tunnel lights really necessary or is it just a case of  brighter the light the dimmer the captain?

Obviously this question will upset some however after todays blinding experience it does raise  concern.

Early this afternoon we went through the Bosworth tunnel and whilst doing so we met a narrow boat coming towards us with a LED tunnel light.  Although the boat was 800m away from us the brightness of this light made it impossible for me to see where I was going unless I blocked the light with my hand. So here comes a happy chappy on his boat with enough light to illuminate Blackpool and all I can see is a bright light similar to the light an optician shines into your eye so they can see the back of your eyeball.

I slowed right down and was hard to the right to allow him to pass safely, then blow me down we heard the sound of metal against brick as he boat chiselled a new scar into the tunnel wall.

Not only that, he also had two additional LED lights just in front of the helmsman position.

As the boat went passed, being vey curious I looked back to see the benefits of the tunnel light and yes it lite the tunnel and yes you could see everything, however this is at the expense of boats coming towards not being able to see jack s**t!

So I ask the question again, are LED tunnel lights really necessary?

No this was a dayboat that had already come out of the tunnel in daylight

 

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Those that use bright LED tunnel lights deserve to have their bits cut off.

I know the tunnel is wide enough to pass so I look at the wall, wind the throttle up and hope for the best, well I did before the paint job was done.

ETA I have been known to turn my light off in retaliation that really confuses them

Edited by Loddon
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16 minutes ago, Tracy D'arth said:

There is no regulation about tunnel lights except that you have to have one

Am I correct in remembering that there used to be regulation that they had to have a cut-off flat beam (as with a foglamp) and that therefore an ordinary spotlamp was prohibited?

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46 minutes ago, ditchcrawler said:

Coming through Netherton with a towpath even the LED bike headlights dazzle as they come towards you.

If more cyclists had to use the tunnels,i'm sure crt would spend our money putting lighting in lighting for them!

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2 hours ago, Andy Durnin said:

Are LED tunnel lights really necessary or is it just a case of  brighter the light the dimmer the captain?

Obviously this question will upset some however after todays blinding experience it does raise  concern.

Early this afternoon we went through the Bosworth tunnel and whilst doing so we met a narrow boat coming towards us with a LED tunnel light.  Although the boat was 800m away from us the brightness of this light made it impossible for me to see where I was going unless I blocked the light with my hand. So here comes a happy chappy on his boat with enough light to illuminate Blackpool and all I can see is a bright light similar to the light an optician shines into your eye so they can see the back of your eyeball.

I slowed right down and was hard to the right to allow him to pass safely, then blow me down we heard the sound of metal against brick as he boat chiselled a new scar into the tunnel wall.

Not only that, he also had two additional LED lights just in front of the helmsman position.

As the boat went passed, being vey curious I looked back to see the benefits of the tunnel light and yes it lite the tunnel and yes you could see everything, however this is at the expense of boats coming towards not being able to see jack s**t!

So I ask the question again, are LED tunnel lights really necessary?

I tend to think that if I really can't see I should stop. If that means I've floated across and blocked the tunnel, and then they have to stop too, it's a handy time to discuss the problem. However those with absurdly bright lights must be crossing with similarly equipped boats, so how can they not know what the problem is?

 

Then you have the happy family groups sitting in their well deck wearing LED head torches, which is no problem until they simultaneously turn to look you in the eye and wish you a good day as the boats cross.

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17 minutes ago, alias said:

 

 

Then you have the happy family groups sitting in their well deck wearing LED head torches, which is no problem until they simultaneously turn to look you in the eye and wish you a good day as the boats cross.

The same as when you meet the joggers out in the dark evenings

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3 hours ago, Rebotco said:

So what?

cars are also 12 volt and a halogen headlight can dazzle you as much as an LED.

The voltage is as irrelevant as the fact that an LED is being singled out.

ALL lights, inappropriately powered can equally dazzle you.

Depends upon the design. My car has 12v LED lights. They are miles ahead in design/complexity to any boat light I've seen. Mind you, a single headlight unit for the car will cost you the best part of 2K. 

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The stated aim of the Boat Safety Scheme is to make sure boats are safe, not for the occupants of that boat, but for others around them.  So it would be entirely consistent for the BSS to specify the maximum power of tunnel lamps and the beam pattern. Any that are too bright and/or pointing in teh wrong direction would result in a BSS fail.

Wouldn't stop the plokers who remove non-compliant stuff for the examination and put it back afterwards, but might damp down sales of the damn things.

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