Interesting conversation with a cop the other day...

John_Galt

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FMVSS 108 mentions fog lamps only twice. The first to say they can't be used as DRLs, the second to say they must be lit during the temperature and internal heat test if they are part of the headlamp assembly. Other than that, fog lamps are not regulated at the federal level.

Idaho's statutes are very... lacking? I guess is how I would refer to them. They seem pretty straightforward (reading as a lay-person) but still outdated.

I'm also not seeing any references to maximum intensities... color (other than fkr brake lights, turn signals and marking lights).

Very broad. Which, again, makes it surprising that they have an entire department focused squarely on this.
 
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Hamilton Felix

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I am waiting until my State, Washington, realizes there is money to be made here. Then I expect they will come up with a light/glare meter of some kind: stop car on level street, measure center height of light, move away a set distance, place light meter at indicated height and measure. A high glare reading means at least an “aim it!” ticket, and is probable cause to check for illegal kits.
 
5S8Zh5

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Looked up Peterson 850 and while you can see images of the light, they don't show any on an auto already mounted.
 
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Drivers in the UK are also complaining about overly bright headlights.

https://www.rac.co.uk/drive/news/mo...bright-dazzled-drivers-say-its-getting-worse/

Headlight dazzle is.....experienced by an estimated 16.1m UK drivers, based on 91% of drivers [RAC survey of 1215 drivers] responding saying ‘some’ or ‘most’ car headlights are too bright and 54% of these saying they are dazzled more regularly now than a year ago.

Headlamp aim forms part of a vehicle’s MOT, and the requirements on garages to conduct this part of the test thoroughly were strengthened in 2016. Nonetheless, figures obtained by the RAC from the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) show that of the 26.5m MOT tests completed in 2018 for Class 4 vehicles (which includes cars) over three years of age, 6% still failed as result of problems with headlamp aim, the equivalent of nearly 1.6m vehicles.** In 2016, the agency also stated that ‘headlamp aim consistently tops the MOT compliance survey as one of the most likely items to be assessed incorrectly by testers.’
 
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SubLGT

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In this entertaining thread at a Ford forum is a clueless F250 owner (with "quad" lowbeams) complaining about being stopped 3 times in one night by 3 different police officers, for bright headlights:

"Has anyone had problems with their regular non-led headlights on their 2017 being too bright on dim? I have 2500 miles and just got stopped for the 3rd time last night all by different cops/troopers. I had my lights on dim but the cop would not listen and swore that they were on bright. I do have a leveling kit but a 2 inch raise shouldn't have affected the light angle that much. When driving the low beam lights do seem awfully bright and actually seem better than the high beams......."

https://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/...-bright-on-dim-causing-me-to-get-stopped.html
 
Alaric Darconville

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I do have a leveling kit but a 2 inch raise shouldn't have affected the light angle that much.
Well, that seems to be the problem right there. Maybe he should lower the vehicle.

People told him to get the lamps aimed and this is what he did:
I had lowered each headlight side 3 full turns already, lowered them 5 more turns each last night.
Yeah, he needs to quit making up random numbers and get the lights aimed correctly.
 
Hilldweller

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Several new cars are coming with flashing 3rd brake lights. I don't know if it's factory or dealer added...
Dealer or aftermarket. It's illegal but rarely enforced.

Speaking of dubious, the city where I work, all of the PD and road-crew trucks are fitted with new lightbars. Nice ones. And they have some really really bright amber LEDs pointing rearward. And those really really bright amber LEDs are in snyc with the brake lights. So when you're behind them at night/early and they hit their brakes, amber photon torpedoes fry your retinas and blood pours from your ears.
Ouch.
 
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Dealer or aftermarket. It's illegal but rarely enforced.

Speaking of dubious, the city where I work, all of the PD and road-crew trucks are fitted with new lightbars. Nice ones. And they have some really really bright amber LEDs pointing rearward. And those really really bright amber LEDs are in snyc with the brake lights. So when you're behind them at night/early and they hit their brakes, amber photon torpedoes fry your retinas and blood pours from your ears.
Ouch.


Reminds me of this:



I sure hope they don't use them at night!
 
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jaycee88

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And those really really bright amber LEDs are in snyc with the brake lights. So when you're behind them at night/early and they hit their brakes, amber photon torpedoes fry your retinas and blood pours from your ears.

Where I am, many ambulances have their red LED emergency lights wired to their brake lamps. They not only leave strong afterimages, but are so bright they literally make my head hurt.
 
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On that topic, the general brightness of the lighting used on emergency vehicles. The blue lightbars on most of the police cars now are so bright that it makes it hard to see anything except blue at night. Yeah, I can see there is a police car stopped but I can't see anything else, including where I need to drive to not hit the police car.
 
Alaric Darconville

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And those really really bright amber LEDs are in snyc with the brake lights. So when you're behind them at night/early and they hit their brakes, amber photon torpedoes fry your retinas...
Where I am, many ambulances have their red LED emergency lights wired to their brake lamps. They not only leave strong afterimages, but are so bright they literally make my head hurt.
And in both places, someone thought that "It's attention-getting! It's common sense that this will reduce accidents!" which is exactly why vehicle lighting and traffic regulations are not left to so-called common sense, rather they are based on proven best practices, studies, and science.
 
alpg88

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Dealer or aftermarket. It's illegal but rarely enforced.

Speaking of dubious, the city where I work, all of the PD and road-crew trucks are fitted with new lightbars. Nice ones. And they have some really really bright amber LEDs pointing rearward. And those really really bright amber LEDs are in snyc with the brake lights. So when you're behind them at night/early and they hit their brakes, amber photon torpedoes fry your retinas and blood pours from your ears.
Ouch.

well, if enough people complain......
 
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Several new cars are coming with flashing 3rd brake lights. I don't know if it's factory or dealer added...

Never factory, always added -- illegally, but as Hilldweller correctly states, nobody enforces.
 
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-Virgil-

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they do not need light meters in most cases, in case of annoying blinding hid\led kits all they need to do is pop the hood, and see bulbs that are not oem

As far as I can see it, that is never, ever going to happen. LEOs aren't going to go poking around under the hoods of cars after dark, and even if they were, in many cases bulb access requires a whole lot more than just opening the hood (like: remove bumper, remove underhood components, sometimes remove the headlamps, etc).

However, you're right that traffic police don't need light meters. What they need is (1) enforceable, up to date laws and (2) infrastructure, by which I mean state-sanctioned (authorized, approved, accredited, however the state would want to do it) headlamp inspection stations. Officer has reason to believe the headlights are improper, writes a ticket. Vehicle owner has some amount of time (say, 14 days) to get the car to an inspection station. If the station finds there's nothing wrong with the lights, they certify to that effect, and the driver submits that certification and the ticket gets cancelled. If the station finds stuff wrong with the lights, they issue a report of problems found. The driver has it all fixed -- whether it's just a re-aim or a removal of the noncompliant bulbs or lamps and installation of appropriate equipment or whatever else -- then goes for another inspection, gets a clean cert, submits it and pays the ticket. The ticket cannot be cleared without a clean cert, and there are progressively harder penalties for subsequent offenses (to ward off funny business with wink/nudge "inspections" or swapping the lights to get the cert and then putting the bad ones back in, etc).

Sounds good, right? Takes a lot of structural support to make it happen. There need to be appropriate laws specifying what counts as acceptable lights and bulbs, hookup and aim; appropriate laws making it an infraction or offense to operate a vehicle on public highways with unacceptable lights, bulbs, hookup or aim; appropriate laws governing how inspection stations operate; funding for those inspection stations, and so on. The likelihood of laws like this appearing on the books is roughly zero. It's too bad the insurance industry doesn't flex its muscle on this; they could simply say "If you're in a crash and we find your car has been modified in a manner that affects its safety performance, your insurance is null and void; you will be liable for all costs and we will raise your premiums. Do it again and we'll cancel your policy and you won't be able to get another one."
 
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Forum member "drmalenko" is a LEO who has posted his success at enforcing lighting laws in his local area (somewhere in South Carolina, IIRC).

For example: https://www.candlepowerforums.com/v...rible-and-Illegal-HID-Conversions-Again/page3

...I had court last week, I had some where in the neighborhood of 20-25 tickets.. most for HID kits and 4 of them for tinted (tail, headlight, turn signal, etc) lamps, all were found guilty based solely on my testimony (no pictures, no walk to the parking lot for the judge to see what was in the car), and this is with 90% of the defendants pleading not guilty....

If they had corrected the improper lights the judge gave them one day in jail and suspended that day, so they basically walked out free of charge, if they had not corrected the problem the judge gave them a $237.50 fine (and I think it is 2 points against your license either way, with or without the fine)...
 
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More from LEO "drmalenko" :
https://www.candlepowerforums.com/v...ed-the-Gubbermint-today-on-those-darned-HID-s

...With the help of several people (Scheinwerfermann and Daniel Stern) I created a packet of information about HID lights. I took this information and passed it out to other officers, then I had a 30 min presentation with all of our Judges that hear traffic cases (about 13 Judges) where I explained all I possibly could and how it applied to our state law (we have a pretty good one) and then allowed the Judges to ask questions so that I could remove any doubt they had when came to giving a gulty verdict if a case went to trial. Every Judge was given a copy of the information so that they could reference it on the bench.

WIth that being said, I have written over 200 tickets thus far and less than 15 people have not come to court/taken out the kits.

I have educated around 5 other officers who regularly enforce the law on HID kits, and they too have this info and can properly testify/win the case in court...
 
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Yes, Drmalenko's efforts deserve a big round of applause. Two things, though:

1. Those threads are 5 and 6 years old. How's it going these days? Did his efforts take off and fly/spread, or did they sputter and fizzle out? I've seen similar efforts killed off a bunch of ways: LEO strokes some brat for improper lights, brat's daddy is some rich/well-connected jagoff who complains to the mayor/governor/chief/commissioner...or the LEO's CO retires or is otherwise replaced, and the new CO considers equipment violations to be a waste of time and orders the LEO to write more speeding tickets and quit writing for bum lights...or the LEO tries and tries and eventually realizes he's trying to row upstream with only one oar and just gives up...or the LEO retires or otherwise leaves traffic duty and the next LEO doesn't give a carp about noncompliant lighting...or the state's laws don't back up the LEO, so when the tickets get to court the defendant (or defendant's daddy) says "Show me where the laws of this state say I/my kid can't have green headlights! Show me where it says the brake light can't blink!" etc, that can't be shown because the state's code was poorly written in the 1930s, and the tickets get dismissed, etc.

2. Whether or not any of that happened, the reason why Drmalenko's efforts deserve such a round of applause is because they're very unusual. Not enough people on this continent care -- and that includes not just the general public, but also legislators and LEOs.
 
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Lately I've been seeing less illegal HID and more illegal LED WHICH ARE WORSE than the illegal HID's because they are even more out of focus than the HID's.

I'm about ready to start wearing sunglasses at night. Yellow ones at a minimum.
 

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