As we are in the midst of yet another wet summer, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Joseph Lipsky reminds our fellow motorists that a behavior which many people think prevents car accidents, may in fact cause them. The behavior in question is turning on a car’s hazard warning lights during a heavy downpour. Not only does this behavior actually create a hazard, but most motorist do not realize, it is actually against the law.
Many motorist think that by turning on their hazard lights that they are helping other drivers better see their car. Unfortunately, the natural reaction of those other drivers is to assume that a vehicle using its hazard lights is actually stopped and needs help. Additionally, when hazard lights are on, they prevent turn signals and brake lights to work properly, making other motorists overreact and causing car accidents.
The applicable Florida law prohibits drivers other than first responders from turning on their hazard lights unless their car is disabled or stopped on the side of a roadway. The State of Florida does not keep track of the number of such tickets given, although we can assume that the law is not regularly enforced, as police officers certainly don’t want to get out of their vehicles during heavy rains.
The Florida Highway Patrol’s advise is if its raining too hard and you are having trouble seeing, that you should pull over on a median and wait for the rain to lessen. As we all know too well, our weather changes unexpectedly and quickly. We remind all of our friends that vehicles do not react the same during wet conditions, so please make sure to drive under control.