Check Your Lights

HID HeadlightsThe next time you get into your vehicle, start it up, set the parking brake, turn on all of the lights and the hazard flashers. Walk around your vehicle and check all the lights. Are they all lit as they should be, and are the lenses clean, intact and still the right colour? If so, you are good to go from the standpoint of lights at least.

For most vehicles today you should find high and low beam headlights, signal lights, park lights and side marker lights at the front. At the rear it will be brake lights, tail lights, signal lights, license plate light, back up lights, and side marker lights. Some larger commercial vehicles will also have clearance and identification lights.

If you choose to install other approved auxiliary lights such as fog or driving lights, these must be in proper working order as well.

Not to be forgotten are the reflectors. These must be yellow on both sides at the front and red at both sides at the rear as well as red at both sides of the rear. If you break down and can't turn the lights on, reflectors are your only protection during darkness. Incidentally, this is another good reason not to park facing the wrong way on the street. You don't have protective reflectors on the front of your vehicle.

Are your headlights aimed properly? If they all function but point in the wrong direction they don't help you see and they hurt the other drivers ability to see. If misalignment is visible to you, it is well past time to have the aim corrected.

Having one headlight, tail light or brake light out is but one step away from having no head, tail or brake lights. If you don't have functioning low beam headlights, tail lights or brake lights your vehicle is in an out of service condition. Should you be stopped, the officer may choose to send you away by tow truck in addition to any other enforcement action such as a traffic ticket or a vehicle inspection order.



Brake Lights

I am finding more and more often that drivers are not checking their marker or brake lights. I encounter at least 2 vehicles a day with one or no functioning brake lights. Are the police actually ticketing or warning people because this seems to be an increasing problem, and I would imagine that this would or could be a cause of accidents especially at night. I also wonder in how many cases of a rear end collision that is caused by the above but not attributed to brake lights not functioning correctly.

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