Seeing and being seen is the be-all and end-all in road traffic. Especially now in autumn, cyclists are increasingly out and about in cloudy weather, twilight and darkness. "To increase visibility and reduce the risk of accidents, we recommend light-colored clothing and reflective elements, for example," says the managing director of Verkehrswacht Münster, Christoph Becker. "On the other hand, functioning and complete lighting on the bike is mandatory".
Mandatory, active bicycle lights include a white front headlight and a red rear light, which can also have a parking light function. These can be permanently installed with a dynamo or operated as clip-on lights with a battery. Battery lights must be installed if necessary, but this can also be the case during the day if visibility is poor due to fog or rain. So it is better to always carry it with you.
Retro-reflectors or reflectors are also required. To the front, a white large-area reflector must work towards the rear. The pedals need yellow reflectors that work to the front and back, and the wheels also need lighting that shines to the side. Either it can be a circumferential white reflective stripe on each side of the tire or white reflective sleeves on each spoke. The classic variant, however, is the "cat's eyes". Modern LED headlights have a high light output and must be set so that they do not dazzle other road users.
"We want you to get through the dark season safely," Becker continued. "Invest a few euros in perhaps a small repair, because money cannot pay for your health and that of other road users." Incidentally, those who ride their bicycles with inadequate lighting or disregard lighting regulations risk a fine of at least 20 euros.