A life-saving invention by a Calderdale man may be nearing the end of the road.
Percy Shaw made a fortune inventing cat’s eyes reflectors which are used on roads nationwide and in other parts of the world.
But the Government has announced plans to change traffic regulations which would allow solar-powered LED road studs to be used instead.
These can be seen up to 1,000 yards ahead which is 10 times further than cat’s eyes.
The lights can operate for up to 10 days with just four hours of charge and cost the same amount over the course of their life as traditional cat’s eyes.
Percy invented the cat’s eyes in the 1930s after he was inspired by the sight of his car headlights reflected by a real cat’s eyes. His company, Reflecting Roadstuds Ltd, then exported cat’s eyes all over the world. He died in 1976 aged 86.
Traffic regulations have stated that “reflective road studs” must be used, which the industry argues has hampered the development of new technology such as LED.
Ministers have announced a consultation on amending the regulations to allow LED lights without reflective strips. They say they provide “extended visibility” and “better performance in poor weather conditions.”
They LED lights cost £30 and last for between eight and 10 years. Cats eyes cost around £10 but last for between two and three years before they need replacing.