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In County Mayo, Ireland, motorists have been warned to be on the lookout for the dreaded one-eyed Cyclops as it roams cities, towns and even the countryside. Yet according to road safety officer Noble Gibbons, the creature of Greek mythology is not the problem. Rather, it is the modern Cyclops – a vehicle with only one working headlight. And there are thousands of these vehicles all across Ireland and the UK on any given night.

These vehicles present a danger to both their drivers and others on the roads for two primary reasons. Where the drivers are concerned, one dark headlight means the illumination capacity of the vehicle is cut in half. This obviously makes it more difficult for drivers to adequately see in front of them.

As for other drivers on the road, they have a more difficult time identifying oncoming traffic when one headlight is not working. The oncoming vehicle has to be much closer before it is recognised. In bad weather, the problem is only exacerbated.

Professional drivers know, as part of the HGV lessons they took during training, that a basic vehicle inspection would identify a malfunctioning headlight before the vehicle ever pulls out. Professional drivers know enough to have broken lights repaired or replaced before beginning their journeys. The same cannot be said for non-professionals.

The truth is, most of us simply get in our cars and go, giving no thought to whether or not both headlights are working. And even when one is identified as malfunctioning, far too many of us delay the repair longer than we should. According to Gibbons, every driver should spend the 60 seconds necessary to check headlights before pulling away.

In the absence of having someone to help you do so, the best way to check your headlights is to point the vehicle at a window, fence, building or other surface that will let you see the light reflection. You’ll quickly be able to identify a malfunctioning headlight this way.

Be Aware, Be Courteous

As one of the UK’s leading providers of commercial driver training, the HGV Training Centre reminds professional drivers of all classes to be aware and be courteous. Be aware of the working state of all exterior lights, making sure any malfunctions are immediately dealt with. Be courteous toward other drivers by remembering they are depending on your exterior lighting as a way of identifying your vehicle as it moves down the road.

HGV Class 1 Licence

Please do your best to remember the training you received during the period of your HGV lessons. This training will be invaluable to you in your quest to remain a safe and responsible driver.

If you are just getting started in the commercial driving sector, we hope you’ll consider the HGV Training Centre for all of your training needs. We offer new instruction as well as remedial HGV lessons designed to sharpen your skills. The HGV Training Centre is proud provide the most comprehensive training in the UK.


  1. HGV Ireland – http://www.hgvireland.com/01/02/motorists-get-cyclops-warning/


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