(May 12, 2017) - Welcome to the Sweet Sixteen Edition of "Ask CCPD." We got some questions this week! Thank you for them, and keep them coming please! This week's question is from Thomas, who writes:
"I was wondering if it was illegal to have neon lights in my wheel wells or even on the bottom of my car, turned on, while driving? I see trucks have their wheel wells lit up with blue or some other color. But I wanted to know because some people say it's illegal, some people say otherwise."
That's an excellent and common question, Thomas. Red (other than your normal taillights and brake lights) and blue (never) are NOT legal to have on the vehicle. Florida State Statute 316.2397 (1) states this in regard to forward-facing lighting, and Section 2 goes on to say this regarding blue lights anywhere on the vehicle. This obviously doesn't apply to police vehicles, but that's why the rule is in place....only we get to play with the pretty blue lights, sorry.
Scrolling down in this same statute to Section 7, flashing lights of any kind are not permitted other than turn signals (USE THEM!), emergency flashers (for emergencies only!), and other rare instances listed in the statute. Violations of any of these things is a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a nonmoving violation (ticket).
There is also another statute section, 316.235 "Additional Lighting Equipment." This statute explains how many and what sort (white or amber) lights you can have on fenders, running boards, etc. Violations of this section are also nonmoving violations (this means no license points) and can get you ticketed. Side lighting can create hazards where other drivers are fooled into thinking you are oncoming or moving in a direction that tricks the eye or is unexpected.
All of these violations are contingent on operation of the vehicle, so if they are off while you're driving, and only on when you're hanging at a car show or with your buddies in a parking lot, you're good. All of these rules apply to all vehicles also, not just cars. (Yes, Cape Coral Bike Night, we're looking at all your sweet looking bikes!) So trick out your rides all you want....just don't do it while you're rolling down the street! Send us your questions for next week's "Ask CCPD", and we will see you next Friday!
About the Author:
Corporal Philip Mullen is a nine year law enforcement veteran assigned to the Office of the Chief of Police and serves as Assistant Public Affairs Officer for the Cape Coral Police Department.
For the last 9 years, Corporal Mullen served as a Patrol Officer in our Patrol Bureau, and as a Field Training Officer, preparing new recruits for the rigors of police work over the past 5 years. Corporal Mullen is a member of the Cape Coral Police Department Honor Guard and has represented the Cape Coral Police Department across the United States. He is a recipient of two Lifesaving Awards and the department's highest honor, the Medal of Honor. Phil holds a Bachelor's Degree in Public Safety Administration from Edison State College.
CAPE CORAL POLICE DEPARTMENT | Public Affairs Office | 1100 Cultural Park Boulevard | Cape Coral, FL 33990 | (239) 242-3341