Should I Use My Hazard Lights in the Rain?

By Martin & Jones on March 11, 2011

In a heavy rain storm when your windshield wipers just won’t keep up, you want to be as safe as possible. Sometimes it is not even safe to pull over. You want to do something. Don’t turn on your hazard lights. The hazard lights indicate your vehicle is a hazard not that the weather is a hazard.

Hazard lights in a driving rain storm distort your intentions. The drivers around you are fighting the rain. The drivers around you must anticipate your intentions through the rain and wipers. The blinking hazard lights make it difficult to tell if you are suddenly braking or turning.

Although North Carolina does not specifically prohibit the use of hazard lights when driving, you could be charged with an unsafe movement. Most other states do prohibit using hazard lights except in certain specific situations such as a funeral procession.

If you feel unsafe in a rainstorm, turn on your headlights on low beam, turn windshield wipers to high, put away the cell phone, move to the far right lane and when you have the opportunity exit, turn off the main road and find shelter. The rain will pass shortly. Be safe.