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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    2

    Question Are Amber Flashbars Illegal in California

    My question involves vehicle maintenance laws for the State of: California

    I privately own a Police Interceptor that has an amber flashbar in the back window. I was recently ticketed according to California Vehicle Code Article 25250. After reading the code, however, I cannot tell whether the bar has to be actively flashing or not for it to be illegal. We have never used it before and we certainly did not have it flashing at the time we were cited. Any clarification would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
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    Default Re: Are Amber Flashbars Illegal in California

    Quote Quoting Matsuken
    View Post
    My question involves vehicle maintenance laws for the State of: California

    I privately own a Police Interceptor that has an amber flashbar in the back window. I was recently ticketed according to California Vehicle Code Article 25250. After reading the code, however, I cannot tell whether the bar has to be actively flashing or not for it to be illegal. We have never used it before and we certainly did not have it flashing at the time we were cited. Any clarification would be greatly appreciated.
    It is my understanding that they have to be flashing, and that their mere inactive display is not unlawful.

    However, understand that if you have a "police interceptor" with amber lights in the back, you are a PRIME candidate for police contact because there is a very real possibility that people will mistake you for officers, or that people might think you are pretending to be. Since there have been well publicized events in recent years of police impersonators, expect continued police attention so long as those ambers are there.

    - Carl
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Are Amber Flashbars Illegal in California

    Thank you very much for your feedback and advice Carl! This was the first trouble we'd had since buying the car, so we never gave it any thought, but we'll be taking the ambers out now.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,377

    Default Re: Are Amber Flashbars Illegal in California

    Quote Quoting Matsuken
    View Post
    Thank you very much for your feedback and advice Carl! This was the first trouble we'd had since buying the car, so we never gave it any thought, but we'll be taking the ambers out now.
    That is probably the best bet.

    And when you go to trial, you might want to consider a trial by written declaration first, and point out that the ambers were not flashing at all. Perhaps you can include a copy of, or a quote from, the section, and describe where the lights were mounted in your vehicle. You might also consider to note that the light bar has since been removed so as to avoid any future confusion.

    If you lose, you get to file for a new trial and go before the judge where you can ask the officer that question.

    - Carl
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

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