Equipment

Information on specific vehicle equipment.

To See, or Not To See - Tinted Windows

tinted side windowsOne of my preferred enforcement practices was to use an unmarked car and drive in the right hand lane at or just under the speed limit. This gave me plenty of time to look at and into whatever passed by on my left. Vehicle defects, failing to wear a seatbelt, distracted driving and other things of interest to a traffic cop were often easily discovered.

Roadside Mechanical Inspections

tow awayMany people think of traffic policing consists mostly of handing out speeding tickets. This is not the case as there are many other job functions that officers are responsible for. One that I often found to be an interesting challenge was conducting roadside mechanical inspections.

Q&A - Backup Light Confusion

Q&A ImageQ: how is it that car manufacturers are allowed to use reverse lights for functions other than reversing?

I find it very confusing in a parking lot when I am slowing down for a vehicle that has reverse lights on, only to find people walking towards it or away from it and the vehicle is simply using the reverse lights as a "parking light" or some such thing.

VIDEO - If Cars Could Talk, Accidents Might be Avoidable

ted logoJennifer Healey is a research scientist who works for the semiconductor giant Intel developing the mobile devices of the future. One of those devices might be your car, and it will talk to other vehicles around it. If we can solve the privacy concerns, vehicles may be able to insure that their drivers avoid collisions.

Problems with Deferred Maintenance

junker carCommercial vehicle maintenance is carefully regulated in our province. Power units are subject to inspections at a designated inspection facility every 6 months and trailers once every year. Drivers must do a pre- and post-trip safety inspection each time they drive. Defects must be noted in a written log and repairs carried out promptly, sometimes before leaving the driveway.

Refer to Your Owner's Manual

owner's manualOne of the loneliest books in the world might just be your vehicle's owner's manual. Consigned to the glove box, many never see the light of day until they find a new home in the recycle bin. That's a shame because the manufacturer of your vehicle has put a lot of thought and important safety information on those pages.

It's Winter Tire Time Again

Winter Tire Regulatory SignI remember when I was a teenager working in my father's service station. On the day of the first snowfall our customers would be lined up in the driveway to have their winter tires installed when we arrived to start the day. We did nothing but install tires and our air compressor didn't get any rest until after we had shut the bay doors and left for home.

Q&A - Modifying a Vehicle Exterior

Q&A ImageQ: I have a question about legality around modifying the exterior of my car. I have seen many modified (often lowered suspension as well) cars with front lip spoilers/splitters and I was wondering around the legality of them for a street car. Do you know if they are they legal to have or would they affect insurance in any way to have one if I were to be in a front end collision, either with another car or pedestrian?

The Trailer Pre-Trip Check

Ubilt Utility TrailerThere's nothing like a beautiful spring day to bring out the trailer that has sat unused since last fall. A lot can happen to a trailer while it sits idle waiting to be useful again. Lighting connections corrode, tires lose pressure, reflectors are broken, brakes need service along with many other possibilities for wear and malfunction.

Headlight Systems can be Complex to Police

HID HeadlightsIn my time as a driver I've seen headlight technology progress from tungsten filament glass sealed beams to quartz halogen, high intensity discharge and now LED and even laser. There is more light on the road today from the driver's point of view than there has ever been. While that can be a good thing if all that light is coming from your vehicle, it might not be so great if you are the one facing it.

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