Community Alert: Wipers On, Lights On

EFFECTIVE TODAY: MANDATORY LIGHTS & WIPERS

NEW LAW REQUIRING USE OF HEADLIGHTS AND TAILLIGHTS WHEN WINDSHIELD WIPERS ARE ON

Today, Tuesday, April 7, 2015, the MassDOT Registry of Motor Vehicles and Highway Divisions, along with the Massachusetts State Police, advised motorists of a new law requiring  the use of headlights and taillights on motor vehicles during inclement weather and when windshield wipers are in use.  The law is intended to increase safety and visibility of vehicles on the Commonwealth’s roadways.

The changes to Mass General Law Chapter 85, Section 15, signed into law in January and effective today, require 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.
  • From half an hour after sunset to half an hour before sunrise.

Relying on daytime running lights for these conditions is not sufficient under the law.  A violation of this law is considered a surchargeable minor motor vehicle traffic law violation for insurance purposes and may be accompanied by a fine.  For more information on the Safe Driver Insurance Plan and insurance surcharge information, please visit the RMV’s Merit Rating Board.