COUNCILS in Sunderland and Durham could turn off or dim some street lights in a bid to cut carbon emissions.
But the authorities have been warned the attempt to boost their green credentials could lead to a spike in accidents.
However, civic leaders say any changes would be limited to certain areas and times.
In Durham, a stretch of lights on the A167 south of Chester Moor was dimmed between 12am and 5am to 75 per cent of their capacity, and this could become a model for other parts of the county.
Sunderland City Council’s head of streetscene, Les Clark, said: “Energy savings may be achieved through dimming lighting levels, reviewing the switching on and off times and utilising new technology.
“These approaches are all currently being explored.”
All avenues to save energy, and money are now being investigated.