Washington LED light laws

Discussion in 'Pacific Northwet - Where it's green. And wet.' started by EmptiMind, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. EmptiMind

    EmptiMind Stoopid Youngin'

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    Hey folks, curious to know what Washington's rules are on LED light kits. Not looking to be flashy, or showy or anything, but there have been far too many times riding later at night that I've almost been merged into. Riding season is coming up on us, so I'm just looking for a way to be more noticed. I keep reading the laws regarding, and it just confuses me more. Just looking to put maybe two strips illuminating my engine. Just enough to let people know I'm there.

    Thanks all.
    #1
  2. enumclaw

    enumclaw I just....don't know

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    Just do it. I ride all year, and I figure the cops have better things to worry about than motorcycles with some extra conspicuity. Never had a problem so far.
    #2
  3. Watercat

    Watercat . . . gravity sucks

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    Of course, you'd certainly be ticketed for lights that are blue, and most probably red . . . . . .

    :wink:
    #3
  4. EmptiMind

    EmptiMind Stoopid Youngin'

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    Ride an amazon green Buell S3T and a green KLR, and a green Honda Metropolitan. See a trend? Hah. I assumed as long as the lights weren't blinding anyone, I'd be fine, but I really hate paying for tickets which I think are unjustified.
    #4
  5. WeeMcD

    WeeMcD V-Strom explorer

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    It's very rare that the middle of the bike needs lights. The fore and aft are the most valuable bright areas. These are also two spots that you're least likely to have po-po issues. Get a good set of fog/driving lights and a some additional LED running/brake lights. Also, consider the clothing that you're wearing. Brightly colored and reflective jacket, pants and helmet make an incredible difference in conspicuity.

    Remember, you go where you look. Do you want that person sitting next to you in traffic staring at the pretty color of your engine's decorative lights? You want to be noticed, but don't want stares.
    #5
  6. EmptiMind

    EmptiMind Stoopid Youngin'

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    It's mostly people merging into me at night that scares me. My front headlight and taillight are quite bright. Haven't had too many issues with that regard, but I've been almost merged into many times.
    #6
  7. sorebutt

    sorebutt Long timer

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    I believe the law says red lights in the rear and yellow or amber on the sides.
    #7
  8. WeeMcD

    WeeMcD V-Strom explorer

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    Then perhaps it is time to re-assess your riding gear. High-viz gear changes traffic patterns around you. In your situation, reflective everything should do the trick. Go buy a strip of 3M SOLAS grade reflective tape and create some cool patterns on your helmet. There is plenty on a roll to add some to your bike, too.
    #8
  9. GSguy

    GSguy Here's a quarter.

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    Loud pipes save lives :lol3




















    :hide
    #9
  10. OlyRider

    OlyRider Long timer

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    Not meaning to sound condescending, but I stopped having that problem when I started making sure I stayed out of cager blind spots. I-5, or in town, I make the effort to get ahead of, or stay behind, cagers trying to kill me. Not as hard as it seems, and certainly not taxing, it just becomes part of the routine.
    #10
  11. tblume

    tblume gettin'it

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    do both of these.

    You'll still be merged into as you're safely passing that dope on their phone. :huh
    #11
  12. tony the tiger

    tony the tiger Long timer

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    :wave Now Tim - if you were 'safely' passing it'd be at reasonable speed, yes? :evil
    I like the phrase "pass with prejudice" ...works for me (even in the hack!)
    #12
  13. SOP Dirt-Rider

    SOP Dirt-Rider Been here awhile

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    Check out the Hyper Whites in modulate mode, mount em in a crossing pattern. Used 3 years commuting up and down I5, never had a LEO look crosswise and even had some of Tacoma and Fifies finest compliment them. Added benny? People get out of your way.
    #13
  14. EmptiMind

    EmptiMind Stoopid Youngin'

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    Yeah, I've got a high-vis jacket, I've got reflective tape on my arm, and down my leg, I stay out of blind spots, even have loud pipes. Nothing wrong with a little more, because even with all that, I've still had the teenage girl texting swerve too close. I know lights won't make it impossible to be ignored, but it makes it harder. Just wondering the legality of it.
    #14
  15. dagwood

    dagwood Banned

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    "loud pipes save lives"
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  16. WeeMcD

    WeeMcD V-Strom explorer

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    RCW46.37.100 has some interesting tidbits. The most interesting is that motorcycles are allowed to have a blue dot light at the rear of the bike. If anyone has seen these on the po-po bikes, then you know they scream into the dark night air. Best of all, others will think you're a cop and improve their behavior around you. I may actually try these out.
    #16
  17. DeeG

    DeeG Huh?

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    I started swapping out those completely useless reflectors for LED's.

    First attempt was on my Rebel:


    Before:

    [​IMG]


    After:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    got them here, $4 each:
    http://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/led-light-modules/round-led-accent-light/17/
    #17
  18. RWBWheel

    RWBWheel Been here awhile

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    IMO, I agree with a riding instructor I once had and a bright solid colored helmet is the safest / most boring thing you can put on.
    Graphics on most MX type helmets at speed look like urban camo..
    #18
  19. Maddaddy

    Maddaddy Greg

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    You can always wear lights on your person, like bicycle riders.

    No penalty there.

    My friend wears blinky lights hooked to the sides of his reflective vest at night.

    Cop pulled him over and asked where he could get some.:norton
    #19