Is it Illegal for Civilians to Use Emergency Vehicle Lights?

We get this question often: who can legally use police lights or LED warning lights?

The answer?

Well, it depends. Each state has their own laws that regulate the use of colored and flashing LED lights. These statutes determine which types of vehicles can use specific colors, and when and how they can be used. Your state may even require a permit depending on your application and intended use. Generally speaking, the use of lights and sirens are restricted to authorized emergency vehicles and first responders who use their POVs for emergency operations.

Not quite sure if you can buy emergency vehicle lights? Check out our article for more information!

Check Your State’s Laws

We can’t stress this enough: you should always check your state’s laws regarding the installation and proper use of emergency vehicle lighting equipment. These laws are often very specific, and they can vary depending on your application, even amongst first responders. A volunteer firefighter’s POV may be subject to different laws than, let’s say, an authorized fire truck. This is the case in New York: fire trucks can use red and white warning lights, whereas a firefighter POV can only use blue lights. Some states may even require a permit to use certain types of lights and colors. Before purchasing emergency vehicle lights, take a look at these regulations carefully, it could save you a ton of trouble in the future!

Who Can Legally Purchase LED Warning Lights?

The installation and use of emergency vehicle lights may be restricted, but purchasing them is not. Anyone can buy lights and sirens, even if they are not a first responder. At first, this may seem like a contradiction, but there are several practical reasons why non-first responders may need to purchase warning lights. Professional installers, fleet managers, private security firms, and off-roading enthusiasts (to name a few) can buy LED warning lights for specific purposes. Lights and sirens also make great gifts!

LED warning lights are powerful tools for first responders, but they also need to be used carefully and in compliance with state laws and regulations. Make sure you’re informed and aware of these laws before you install emergency vehicle lights on your car or truck!