Q&A - Flashing high brake light?

motorcycleIs it legal to install a module that would cause only the high, centre mounted brake light to flash 5 times in the first second, twice in the second second and then stay on for the remainder of the brake peddle application? The operation of the two other brake lights would not be affected by the module.


Currently Not Legal in BC

Here is the BC rule that regulates flashing lights on vehicles. The only thing that comes close are the hazard flashers defined in (7) but your center high mount stop light is not a turn signal or side marker lamp.

Motorcycles are a special case when it comes to headlamps:


4.05 (8) A motorcycle may be equipped with modulating headlamps if the headlamps comply with section 5.6 of the Technical Standards Document No. 108, Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations (Canada).

Lamps are all required to meet Motor Vehicle Safety Act requirements:

S5.5.10 The wiring requirements for lighting equipment in use are:

(a) Turn signal lamps, hazard warning signal lamps, and school bus warning lamps shall be wired to flash;

(b) Headlamps and side marker lamps may be wired to flash for signaling purposes;

(c) A motorcycle headlamp may be wired to allow either its upper beam or its lower beam, but not both, to modulate from a higher intensity to a lower intensity in accordance with section S7.9.4S5.6;

(d) All other lamps shall be wired to be steady-burning.

Agree to disagree?

I have brake-light modulators on both my bike as well as my wife's bike.   Modulating headlamps don't help gain the attention of drivers behind you.   As it is, most safety courses teach motorcyclists to pulse their brakes before stopping or when decelerating - a back-off unit that pulses 4 or 5 times before going solid would be hard to differentiate between electronic or manual operation of the lights.

Of note is this response from the Saanich police to somebody else asking about brake-light modulators:


In BC there are no regulations in place governing brake light modulators.

-- Cst. Kris Dukeshire

(2013-12-27: This comment does not appear to exist any longer.)

Still Disagree

I stand by my original answer, a modulated brake lamp is a flashing lamp and it is not a lamp permitted by Division 4:

General lighting requirements

4.02 (2) A vehicle on a highway must be equipped with lamps equivalent to those provided by the original manufacturer in accordance with the requirements that applied under the Motor Vehicle Safety Act (Canada), or a predecessor to that Act, at the time of vehicle manufacture.

Technical Standards Document 108 requires that the brake lamps be steady burning.

I believe this device is a

I believe this device is a good safety related addition and I'm going to leave it installed. If a police officer is offended and has the time and interest to ticket me than I'll have to pay the consequences.

Google Ads