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Ask a Trooper: Parking lights and headlights revisited

Question: Not long ago, I read an article you wrote saying that drivers should have their headlights on all the time. I agree 100 percent. Why don’t they make it a law? (And not just parking lights, I mean actual headlights — I can’t stand seeing cars with just their parking lights on so I flash them). Anyway, making this a law would be easier on everybody.

Answer: Back around 1985, I sent my captain a memo regarding this very issue. In the memo, I asked if we could somehow get support for a bill mandating the use of headlights at all times. He agreed, and sent it on to our legislative supervisor. That person agreed, but when he brought it up, he was told by someone in the Legislature at that time that the manufacturers would soon be making their vehicles so the headlights would automatically turn on when you start the vehicle and we would be wasting our time supporting such a bill. Well, this is many years later, and you can see how far we are with this issue now.

If you want to be safer, drive with your headlights on at all times. There is no better time to start a very good habit. (I suggest not flashing your bright lights at anyone. That is how road rage incidents can start).