Lighting on two Bay area bridges is going green.

Caltrans is installing energy saving LED lights on the Carquinez and Richmond-San Rafael bridges in a pilot project to determine if the lights are tough enough to use on all bridges in the region.

"We want to see how they hold up in the winter," said Caltrans spokesman Bob Haus. "Bridges are challenging ennvironments, with high winds, salt water, and vibrations from all the vehicles."

The light emitting diode or LED lights use 60 percent less energy and are expected to last 10 years instead of the two-year life time of the old high pressure sodium bulbs, he said.

Being able to change light bulbs less often reduces the need for maintenance crews to close lanes and disrupt traffic, he added.

Caltrans has installed 56 LED lights on the Carquinez Bridge, and has put 100 of the bulbs into place on the Richmond bridge with 100 more to be installed there.