Strobe brake lights are a persistently popular aftermarket modification. With automakers like GMC offering luxury vehicles with headlights capable of dazzling light shows, one might predict that these modifications will remain popular and perhaps enjoy heightened demand. However, are they legal to use while the car is in motion?

What are strobe brake lights, exactly?

are strobe brake lights illegal?

A Volvo EX90 illuminated brake light | Mikael Sjoberg/Bloomberg via Getty Images

If you’re unfamiliar with strobe brake lights, the term refers to brake lights that can flash and are typically added as an aftermarket modification. However, some European manufacturers, like Mercedes-Benz, incorporate flashing brake lights that blink three times during an emergency full stop. Still, strobe brake lights typically flash continuously and are added more as a matter of personal preference than public safety.

Some drivers contend that strobe brake lights are safer than conventional static ones. If you’ve ever shared a road with a vehicle with them, chances are the blinking lights caught your eye. However, while they certainly capture attention, not everyone agrees that they are safer.

Other drivers believe these brake lights are the kind of distraction that could cause an accident. Under certain conditions, the sudden flash could lead a driver to react as if a car is nearby. They may mistake the lights for an approaching emergency vehicle and scramble to move aside. The flashes could also cause them to take their eyes off the road ahead and miss a road sign or car. Additionally, if a driver has epilepsy, strobe brake lights could trigger a seizure.

Roads Policing Unit in Galway. 3 cyclists cycled past red light despite marked Garda motorcycle at the junction. 5 other cyclists had no lights or hi visibility clothing. #cyclesafety

— An Garda Síochána (@GardaTraffic) February 24, 2018

There are indeed some compelling arguments that strobe brake lights are a potential hazard. According to The Autopian, the federal government largely agrees and requires vehicles to have static lighting on headlights and taillights. As per The Boston Herald, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration blocked an effort by Mercedes-Benz to allow flashing brake lights on vehicles sold in the U.S.

State vehicle codes don’t always reflect this prohibition. For example, The OC Register notes that a finite set of blinks are permissible under California’s Vehicle Code. Some media outlets, like The Mankato Free Press, have misreported that flashing lights are legal on cars. Yet, the federal statute still prohibits them, and the federal prohibition supersedes the state code.

Separate from this is whether flashing brake lights are allowed on motorcycles. Here, the states have more leeway to regulate the types of allowable brake lights. The Motorcycle Legal Foundation‘s piece is a good resource to determine the relevant laws concerning strobe brake lights in your state.

For example, the site notes that these lights are illegal in Washington, Colorado, Mississippi, Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Pennsylvania. However, the laws and regulations vary even in states that allow them. In Georgia, these lights are permitted, so long as they are not blue. In Virginia, they are allowed so long as they are not red, white, or blue. In Alaska, they can only be installed on the back of the vehicle. If you’re considering adding them to your bike, you should check your state’s laws and regulations first.

What other aftermarket modifications are illegal?

? There's not much better than exhaust flames ?#Fuego

— Gran Turismo (@thegranturismo) March 11, 2020

Strobe brake lights aren’t the only aftermarket modification you may see on the road of dubious legality. Drivers have outfitted their rides with all kinds of accessories, often prioritizing the cool factor over public safety or the law. Some of these modifications you may have seen include exhaust flame kits, which are illegal in most states. Another is known as a dynamic light spot. It’s a type of sensor technology that detects pedestrians and then bathes them in infrared light. It’s legal in Europe but not in the U.S.

Other modifications aren’t the type you’d be able to spot immediately. However, if you’re a passenger in a vehicle with one of these features installed, know that it’s not legal. Dual-front video displays (tech that shows driver information in one pane and a movie in another) is not permitted, as per the feds. Rear-view mirror cameras are also prohibited. Regulators don’t think they provide the safety they promise and are more liable to cause a distraction.

Now, if you’re overseas, you may be surprised to learn what’s not permitted on vehicles in European countries. Remote start, which is quite popular here, won’t be found in cars manufactured and sold in Europe. Satellite radio is another feature that can’t be found in vehicles in many European nations. The reason is grounded not in public safety but in jurisdictional disputes between different providers.

Unlike in Europe, back on these shores, strobe brake lights on cars are illegal, and the rules about them on motorcycles vary state by state. Keep that in mind if your local mechanic tries to sell you these accessories.

Keyword: Are Strobe Brake Lights Illegal?


Best cars for a 'Love Bug' remake

Tennessee’s Yard Art The Thorndyke Special The Hot Rod The Hippie Van Jim’s Lamborghini Growing up, it’s safe to say my absolute favorite movie was Disney’s “The Love Bug.” As a kid living in a world before Pixar’s “Cars,” it was pretty much the best car movie. I loved ...

View more: Best cars for a 'Love Bug' remake

Audi timing belt tensioner prompts Utah bomb squad visit

An aftermarket timing belt tensioner found in a Salt Lake City apartment prompted a visit from the bomb squad this week after it was mistaken for a potential explosive device. Police partially evacuated the apartment complex in which it was found “out of an abundance of caution” and called ...

View more: Audi timing belt tensioner prompts Utah bomb squad visit

2023 GMC Sierra HD 2500 and 3500 will get more expensive

GMC Sierra HD pickups are about to get more expensive again after recently becoming more expensive, according to GM Authority. In July, GMC and Buick raised the prices on certain vehicles in their lineups anywhere from $975 to $1,675 by making the previously optional OnStar a standard feature. Next ...

View more: 2023 GMC Sierra HD 2500 and 3500 will get more expensive

Our week with EVs: Recapping the diverse collection of electric cars we tested

Mercedes-Benz EQB First Drive Review: Next electric Benz is a little different 2022 Chevy Bolt EV Road Test Review: Time to play EV, gas or airplane 2023 Genesis GV60 Road Test Review: The third of Hyundai Group’s E-GMP EVs is the fastest, but softest It may be hard to ...

View more: Our week with EVs: Recapping the diverse collection of electric cars we tested

Europe car sales lowest since 1996 after 12-month decline

BERLIN – Europe registered the lowest number of new passenger cars in the month of June this year since 1996 at just over 1.06 million vehicles, with some carmakers seeing sales drop by nearly 50%, data from Europe’s automobile association showed on Friday. Volkswagen Group was the hardest-hit major ...

View more: Europe car sales lowest since 1996 after 12-month decline

More Than Just A Carmaker: Toyota Motor PH Launches Toyota Mobility Solutions

Automotive industry leader, Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation (TMP) inaugurated today Toyota Mobility Solutions Philippines, Inc. (TMSPH), a wholly owned subsidiary that will be a provider of mobility-related services. TMSPH ventures into the development and offering of a range of ‘new mobility solutions’ that will enhance Toyota as a brand ...

View more: More Than Just A Carmaker: Toyota Motor PH Launches Toyota Mobility Solutions

'F1 22' feels fast and familiar | Gaming Roundup

‘F1 22’ impressions ‘Construction Simulator’ is launching Sept. 20 Autoblog may receive a share from purchases made via links on this page. Pricing and availability are subject to change. This week in racing game news: ‘F1 22’ impressions At its core, “F1 22,” the latest installment in the F1 ...

View more: 'F1 22' feels fast and familiar | Gaming Roundup

Watch a single-engine plane crash-land on 91 Freeway in California

A single-engine Piper Cherokee airplane was forced to crash land on the 91 Freeway in California after losing power about 45 minutes outside of Los Angeles. Yes, that means this was a very busy highway, practically bursting at the seams with traffic. No, amazingly nobody died, either in the ...

View more: Watch a single-engine plane crash-land on 91 Freeway in California

Ford files 'Mustang Dark Horse' trademark application

Make adventures more comfortable with high-quality Jeep grab handles

New Lucid Air variant to debut & Stealth Look to be on display during Monetary Car Week

Chevy offers incentives to prevent Corvette Z06 flipping

Average U.S. gas price falls below $4/gallon

German court: SUV driver must pay more than a car for running red light

Australian vehicle crash tests to include underwater performance

Toyota C-HR rumored to get revamp next year and an EV version

Geely's electric Zeekr 009 is an EV Alphard we never had; 700 km, 542 PS, top speed 190 km/h

A Newey, Brawn and Anderson row that shows F1 doesn’t change

Sorry, EV buyers, you won't get to pick your own pedestrian safety sounds

There won't be enough copper to meet climate goals, study indicates


Breaking thailand news, thai news, thailand news Verified News Story Network