If you have day time running lights…manually turn your lights on to avoid a ticket or surcharge.
Massachusetts has a new law for all drivers to remember. The law involves the use of both head and rear lights whenever the use of the wipers is needed. As of April 7, 2015 you can be stopped for non-compliance and ticketed. Although the ticket amount is nominal, it is a surchargeable violation that will impact your insurance premiums for up to six years. The law is intended to increase safety and visibility of vehicles on the Commonwealth’s roadways.
Mass General Law Chapter 85, Section 15, signed into law in January, requires that front and rear motor vehicle lights be activated in all of the following conditions:
- When windshield wipers are on;
- When low light or weather conditions prevent other vehicles or persons from being seen at 500 feet; or
- From ½ hour after sunset to ½ hour before sunrise.
- Relying on daytime running lights for these conditions is not sufficient under the law.
The law is fairly easy to comply with; just turn on your wipers and lights during the appropriate situations. It may be a bit trickier if you have daytime running lights. Typically, running lights do not activate your rear lights, just the headlights. You will have to check to make sure that both the front and rear lights are ON if you intend on relying on your daytime lights. Check with your car manual, vehicle manufacturer, or maybe easiest of all, with a friend who can see the back of your vehicle as you drive and be able to tell you if the rear lights are on when the daylight running lights are activated. If they are not, then to comply with this new law, you will have to manually turn on your lights so that both the front and back lights are lit.