Royal Mail LED Lighting Policy & Roll-Out – Health and Safety Concerns

Royal Mail LED Lighting Policy & Roll-Out – Health and Safety Concerns:
To: All Branches
Dear Colleagues,
The Health, Safety & Environment Department has received a number of enquiries from Health and Safety Representative regarding Royal Mail’s new lighting policy and the installation of LED Lighting in Offices across the UK.
The queries being raised are as a result of recent media reports referring to medical research indicating a possible link between LED Lighting and ill health effects. These articles report that Governments around the world are adopting the low-energy LED (Light-Emitting Diode) lighting in an effort to reduce energy consumption, reduce carbon emissions and cut costs. LED street lighting is being adopted in the US and UK and some Medical experts have expressed concerns that LEDs may be too bright or emit the wrong type of light which could have damaging health impacts on vision and sleep. The light values are far higher than compared with an incandescent bulb. However Medical researchers in Sweden compared the effects of caffeine and LED (blue light) on the brain and found them both to have a positive effect with people performing better under LED lighting. The conversion to LED is currently underway across the UK and for example in London, Lambeth Council has already installed 12,000 LED Street Lights. Trials of LED street lamps by Transport for London reported a largely positive response, but also recorded instances of people being dazzled by the lights which some say cause glare. Clearly more research is needed.
What is clear is that the reports are in the main concentrated on Street Lighting as opposed to lighting in buildings, homes, offices and workplaces.
The issue of LED Lighting has been raised with the Royal Mail Group Property & Facilities Solutions Property Risk & Compliance Management Team from where the concern was discussed with the Buildings Engineering Services and Energy design team and Technical Advisors who are dealing with the installation of LED lighting in Royal Mail Group buildings, Yards and Car Parks.
Royal Mail Property & Facilities Solutions made it clear to the CWU Health, Safety & Environment Department that there is no linkage between RMG lighting systems and LED Street Lights which are said to be possibly affecting sleep patterns and vision. Their technical design team responsible for the design and specification of LED lighting installations at a number of sites across the RMG estate confirmed that the LED luminaires used are UK manufactured in line with all relevant British Standards (including BS60598) for luminaire construction and the testing of LED luminaires (LM80) and that the installation meets current industry lighting guidelines. The LED luminaires were selected to match the lighting quality parameters already in existence with the fluorescent lighting scheme and also addressed the issue of maximum intensity. All optics used in the installation use high specification diffusing optics so that the direct intensity of the LED is never visible to anyone occupying the space. They wished to confirm that Royal Mail has invested in high quality LED luminaires that provide exceptional optical control to ensure the intensity of the luminaire is comparable to alternative light sources.
Attached is a copy of the response and statement on this matter from the Technical Director of Royal Mail Group’s suppliers “Whitecroft Lighting Limited” of Ashton-Under-Lyne for information.
Yours sincerely
Dave Joyce

National Health, Safety & Environment Officer
Email Attachments – Click to download
Attachment 1 – LTB238/17 Royal Mail LED Lighting Policy & Roll-Out – Health and Safety Concerns:

Attachment 2 – Royal Mail Light Quality Statement Jan 17

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