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Forward facing blue lights.

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  • Forward facing blue lights.

    Made a stop today on a pick-up that had blue led lights around the headlights and blue fog lights. When informed of why they were stopped I was handed a copy of TTC 547.305 that they said was provided to them by the DPS office when they went there to see if they were legal. Since the lights are not "beacons, flashing or alternating" are they now legal to have? Does this have to be worked from the angle that they aren't DOT approved lights?


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  • #2
    I don't know why, but this has been an endless topic of debate just in the 3 years I've been in LE. The confusion seems to stem from the fact that no one knows what is meant by "beacon" in the context of this law.

    I've seen some that have a little strip of blue LED lights bordering the front license plate or bordering the headlights. They don't flash or anything. But would that constitute a "beacon?" Probably depends on your local prosecutor. Personally, I wouldn't stop someone for it because the law is ambiguous to me and there are other things to stop people for.

    Whether it's "legal" or not.. the debate continues.

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    • #3

      This is the actual truck. The LEDs can be changed. At the time I stopped it they were blue.


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      • #4
        Good in my book. Write the ticket how YOU interpret the law, and let the prosecutor deal with it
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        • #5
          Thanks for posting the pic. Obviously if he had the red lights on when you stopped him that's a pretty clear violation. But I'd have to agree on this one that it would be perfectly reasonable to cite him for the blue lights too. A "beacon" usually has the connotation of a light that is meant to "get someone's attention." I'd say that a blue light like that would certainly have that effect. I wouldn't be surprised if other vehicles yielded the right of way or pulled over when he got behind them (which is what I think the law is designed to prevent).

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          • #6
            A beacon is a rotating light. Those headlights and fog lights as a solid color are perfectly legal. They can be any color aside from red. Also, if I was unsure of my PC, I wouldn't even do it in the first place.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by dgtx42 View Post
              A beacon is a rotating light. Those headlights and fog lights as a solid color are perfectly legal. They can be any color aside from red. Also, if I was unsure of my PC, I wouldn't even do it in the first place.
              Not all beacons rotate.

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              • #8
                Sec. 547.3215. USE OF FEDERAL STANDARD. Unless specifically prohibited by this chapter, lighting, reflective devices, and associated equipment on a vehicle or motor vehicle must comply with:
                (1) the current federal standards in 49 C.F.R. Section 571.108; or
                (2) the federal standards in that section in effect, if any, at the time the vehicle or motor vehicle was manufactured.
                49 C.F.R. Section 571.108 Table I-a—Required Lamps and Reflective Devices states that headlamps must be white in color. "Headlamp means a lighting device providing an upper and/or a lower beam used for providing illumination forward of the vehicle." I would interpret this to include fog lamps as they illuminate to the front of the vehicle. 49 C.F.R. 571.108 also states only colors that can be visible from front of vehicle is white and amber. Also must be DOT approved, which I would assume they are not, as they have either been altered, or replaced all together with something that said that indicated it was for show use only.
                "To hell with a supervisor, men follow a leader" -Texas Ranger Captain Allee

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dgtx42 View Post
                  A beacon is a rotating light. Those headlights and fog lights as a solid color are perfectly legal. They can be any color aside from red. Also, if I was unsure of my PC, I wouldn't even do it in the first place.
                  Not unless you can find "beacon" defined somewhere in the code. BTW, if you do know where it's defined in the code, please share. That would clear this up once and for all.

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                  • #10
                    1bea·con
                    \ˈbē-kən\
                    noun
                    : a strong light that can be seen from far away and that is used to help guide ships, airplanes, etc.
                    : a radio signal that is broadcast to help guide ships, airplanes, etc.
                    : someone or something (such as a country) that guides or gives hope to others
                    Full Definition
                    1 :a signal fire commonly on a hill, tower, or pole
                    2 a :a lighthouse or other signal for guidance
                    b :a radio transmitter emitting signals to guide aircraft

                    3 :a source of light or inspiration

                    Just a regular dictionary definition.


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                    • #11
                      BaylorBear nailed it. They are not legal under the statutes that he cited. I have been to court on this and the guy was convicted. Of course, your citys prosecutor/judges may see it differently.

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                      • #12
                        Thank you everyone for the help.


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Marcus Antonius View Post
                          BaylorBear nailed it. They are not legal under the statutes that he cited. I have been to court on this and the guy was convicted. Of course, your citys prosecutor/judges may see it differently.
                          And that is what it is going to boil down to. The interpretation as made by the local prosecutor and judges will prevail.
                          In God We Trust
                          Everyone else we run local and NCIC

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