Thursday, January 22, 2009

When Dolphins Fly


From October to at least March using reflectors is pretty essential and life saving living in Sweden with its many dark hours per day. And I suppose during the dark hours the rest of the year too, since 40% of all traffic accidents with walking people involved happen during the dark hours.

The reflectors are often firmly sewn in children's clothes, these past years more and more grown ups use reflector vests, you put them on the dog's collar and leash and most common of all reflectors, attach them to the outdoor garments with a safety pin.

Myself I hang one on most every handbag as well as one in each pocket of my coats and jackets. Apparently the fine optical parts in a reflector can be easily worn down and don't age well, hence they should be handled with care for a longer life. Though I doubt most of us bother, since reflectors are cheap and come in a plethora of different styles every winter season. Sold at most every department store, shop, pharmacist, gas station and supermarket, in other words, pretty much everywhere. They're often a common freebie with company prints on them too.

Myself I sport reflectors in shape of hearts, flowers, snowflakes, ghosts, Ahlgren's cars (the world's most sold car), cats, Lilla My (Little My), dogs, Lilla Spöket Laban (Little Ghost Laban) - but the one above that I spotted in a tree (even trees in Sweden apparently need pretty reflectors) looking happy content the other day, that's the first one in dolphin shape I've seen. Though I wouldn't mind having a reflector like that one, any tips on where dolphins looking exactly so are sold is much appreciated.

At the National Society for Road Safety you can read more about the use of reflectors and how to test if they still work (only in Swedish). There are also certain legal requirements concerning reflectors on vehicles in Sweden and a best in test reflectors 2008

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