Reflectors

Using reflectors is a very cheap form of life insurance. Even at dusk, the chances of a pedestrian or rider who is not using reflectors being detected is drastically reduced.

In the dark, a driver will only become aware of you when they are 20 to 30 metres away. This distance increases to 100–125 metres if you are wearing reflectors. This can be the difference between life and death.

Bear in mind that you are even harder to see when the road surface is wet or it is raining or snowing.

There are no legal requirements that stipulate the use of reflectors on you or the horse when you are out riding. If you are driving, there has to be a lamp with a white light shining forward and red light shining back, as well as orange reflectors at the sides and two red reflectors at the back.

Tests have shown that moving reflectors placed at low level are noticed best. Therefore, the best place to put reflectors is on the horse's legs and the more reflectors you have the better. Don't forget yourself, you should also wear reflectors. Because the larger the reflexive surface, the better you can be seen!

It is also a good idea for horses in the paddock to have reflectors on their rugs and/or halters. The risk of an accident is thus minimised should the horses break out of their paddock when it is dark.

Suggested reflectors to use when riding on the public roads:

  • Leg reflectors, at least two, but preferably four – very visible all around.
  • Exercise rugs with reflectors – good visibility from the back and the side.
  • Reflective martingale – very visible from the front and the side.
  • As a minimum, the rider should have a reflective vest and preferably a head torch.

It is important to remember that the lifespan of a reflector is about three years. Replace damaged reflectors, sand and gravel, for example, shorten their lifespan. You can test whether reflectors work by hanging them up next to a new reflector in a dark room and shining a light on them from about four metres away. If the old reflectors are noticeably worse than the new one, it's time to replace them. 

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