Sorry, I've probably assumed this is all clear to me when it isn't to others. I started this thread when I got the reply to the email you mention, including the new advice which dropped the bit about the legal requirement for daytime lights (which was actually the law as it applies to motor vehicles) and replaced it with the advice that bike lights in daytime poor vicibility were a good idea (my wording.)
I've revived the thread to add my belated reply.
Edited to add.
What they sent me was in the form of a pdf attachment. I've copied and pasted that below. The formatting has turned out better than I expected. I've underlined the bit about daytime lights, para 12.
Guidance on regulations about pedal bicycles lighting
1. The use of lighting and reflectors on pedal bicycles is regulated under the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations 1989, as amended. The most recent amendment affecting pedal cycles is Statutory Instrument SI 2005 No. 2559 which came into force on October 23rd 2005.
2. The main effect of this amendment was to permit flashing lights on pedal cycles. The flashing lights do however have to conform to certain requirements which are elaborated below.
Obligatory Lighting and Reflectors
3. Any cycle which is used between sunset and sunrise MUST be fitted with the following:
• white front light
• red rear light
• red rear reflector
• amber/yellow pedal reflectors – front and rear on each pedal.
4. The lamps may be steady or flashing, or a mixture - e.g. steady at the front and flashing at the rear. A steady light is recommended at the front when the cycle is used in areas without good street lighting.
5. If either of the lights is capable of emitting a steady light, then it must conform to BS 6102-3 and be marked accordingly, even if used in flashing mode.
6. Purely flashing lights are not required to conform to BS6102-3, but the flash rate must be between 60 and 240 equal flashes per minute (1-4 per second) and the luminous intensity must be at least 4 candela. (This should be advised by the manufacturer).
7. The pedal reflectors and rear reflector must conform to BS 6102-2.
8. Lights and reflectors not conforming to the BS, but conforming to a corresponding standard of another EC country and marked accordingly, are considered to comply as long as that standard provides an equivalent level of safety.
9. Lights are NOT required to be fitted on a bicycle at the point of sale - but IF they are fitted, then they must comply with these regulations.
Optional lamps and reflectors
10. Additional lighting to the above mentioned obligatory lights is permitted under certain conditions:
• It must not dazzle other road users
• It must be the correct colour (white to front, red to rear)
• If it flashes it must conform to the required flash rate (1-4 equal flashes per second)
11. Optional lights are not required to conform to BS 6102-3 and there is no minimum level of intensity. So for example, on the rear of the cycle a cyclist may wish to have both a steady red lamp which conforms to BS 6102-3 and an additional flashing lamp which is not meeting the minimum level of 4 candela.
Exemptions from the Regulations
12. The only case of exemption from regulations is for cycles when being used between sunrise and sunset, lights or reflectors are not required on cycles used at these times. However it is advisable to fit and use lights and refelctors if cycling in the daytime when visibility is poor, e.g. fog.
Application and enforcement of the Regulations
13. The Regulations concern the construction and use of bicycles. Bicycle and lamp manufacturers, importers, retailers and riders should all ensure that they are familiar with the law.
14. For non-lighting construction and use aspects of bicycle safety such as brakes, other regulations are in force - The Pedal Cycles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1983 (Statutory Instrument 1983 No. 1176).
15. In addition, at the point of first sale a new bicycle must comply with The Pedal Bicycles (Safety) Regulations 2010 (Statutory Instrument 2010 No.198).
16. The Regulations apply to mainland Great Britain but not Northern Ireland. They are made under powers provided by the Road Traffic Act 1988. Enforcement is a matter for the Police.
17. Copies of Regulations are available from:
The Stationery Office
The Publications Centre
PO Box 276 Tel: 0870 600 5522
London Website: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/
SW8 5DT Virtual Bookstore: http://www.tso.co.uk
18. If you require any further information regarding the content of this information sheet, please contact the DfT at the address below:
Transport Technology and Standards
Department for Transport
Great Minster House
76 Marsham Street Telephone: 020 7944 2091
London Fax: 020 7944 2196
SW1P 4DR Email: TTS.firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTE: The information in this document is a summary of DfT’s understanding of what the law requires. However, ultimately the interpretation of the law is a matter for the courts based on individual facts of any particular case. You are therefore advised to consult the relevant
legislation and, if necessary, seek independent advice.
If you would like to purchase printed copies, Statutory Instruments are available to purchase from TSO:
The Stationery Office Tel: 0870 600 5522
TSO Orders/Post Cash Dept online ordering: http://www.tso.co.uk/bookshop
PO Box 29
Alternatively you can consult consolidated versions such as “The Encyclopaedia of Road Traffic Law and Practice” published by Sweet and Maxwell. Such publications are continually updated and are available in most city reference libraries.
EU Directives can be found at:
http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/sectors/ ... dex_en.htm
(The above lists all Directives pertaining to road and agricultural vehicles)
UN-ECE Regulations can be found at: http://www.unece.org/trans/main/wp29/wp29regs.html
Paper copies of Directives can be ordered from TSO or from the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA): Tel: +44 (0)117 952 4178 / 4143 or email to: email@example.com