Insurance Blog
Wednesday, 16 January 2019 15:35

Is it safe to drive in the rain with your hazard lights flashing?

Why it isn't safe to flash hazard lights while driving in the rain.


If you turned on your hazard lights in the rain while driving, then you may be breaking the law, depending on which state you live in. (See the list of New England state laws below.)

Officials stress that flashers should only be used while your vehicle is stopped or disabled on the roadway or shoulder -- hazard lights are a sign for emergency services for motorists who need assistance and may cause confusion and compromise your safety when used while driving.

Hazard lights can actually reduce visibility; they make it difficult for other motorists to determine if you are tapping on the brakes. Also, hazard lights in use don't allow the use of turn signals. There is one situation when hazard lights are appropriate for moving vehicles -- during a funeral procession.

If you are driving while there is a downpour and your visibility is limited, adjust your speed to the conditions by slowing down and leave ample room to adjust and react your vehicle and the vehicle ahead of you.

What to Do During Flash and Roadway Flooding

If you are caught in a storm that has caused significant flooding, do not drive through standing water because your car could become inoperable. Furthermore, there's no way to tell if any part of a roadway has been washed away. "One of the most dangerous times to drive is soon after it begins to rain, as oils on roadways make for slick conditions," Chris Hayes, second vice president of risk control and transportation for, said.

Experts say waiting a few minutes, rather than rushing to your destination, can be a safer plan when it is raining. Turn your headlights on to help other vehicles see you. Many states, including Massachusetts, require the use of headlights during rain, even in broad daylight

New England State Hazard Lights Laws & Rules

Before you drive, make sure you know the laws that apply to hazard lights use.

  • Connecticut: Hazard light use is permitted while driving unless otherwise posted.
  • Maine: Hazard light use is not permitted while driving unless to indicate a traffic hazard.
  • Massachusetts: Hazard light use is not permitted while driving.
  • New Hampshire: Hazard light use is permitted while driving.
  • Rhode Island: Hazard light use is not permitted while driving.
  • Vermont: Hazard light use is permitted while driving.

Other state laws regarding hazard lights use.

When in doubt, pull over and wait it out in a safe place until driving conditions are better.


Read 347 times Last modified on Wednesday, 23 January 2019 15:19

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