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Day time running lights (DRLs) installed on vehicles can reduce visibility-based road crashes according to a recent study by the Monash University Accident Research Centre.

The study, published in the Journal of Safety Research, compiled police data from more than 119,606 car crashes between 2010 and 2017 in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, and Western Australia.

Researchers Angelo D’Elia and Stuart Newstead found that cars with DRLs were 7.6 percent less likely to be involved in a car crash during the day. Meanwhile at dusk and dawn, DRLs were found to reduce car crash risk by 20.3 percent. This contributes to an overall reduction of 8.8 percent during non-night-time hours.

DRLs are lights that come on automatically whenever a vehicle engine is started. While s commonplace in many vehicles sold in Australia, it is not mandated unlike in the EU, UK, Canada, and the United States.

“For the Australian fleet, the increase in DRL fitment, particularly using LED technology, is quite noticeable from 2010, and LED lighting is likely to be much more visible than older incandescent DLR technology,” the researchers wrote.

“Governments should consider a DRL mandate on all new vehicle models, including all variants to accelerate the process of fitment through the fleet. This would likely lead to reductions in the overall crash risk of the fleet,” said the researchers in their paper.

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