Wipers on – headlights on

Last Updated: 2/9/2017

The winter months bring the rainy season to Northern California. During these seasonal storms, driving with both your headlights and your windshield wipers isn’t just a good idea, it’s the law. It doesn’t matter if you’re in a city vehicle or your own; you need to observe this law.

Since 2005, the California Vehicle Code states that motorists are required to turn on their headlights in inclement weather. The law defines the qualifying conditions in two ways:

  • The first is a “condition that prevents a driver of a motor vehicle from clearly discerning a person or another motor vehicle on the highway from a distance of 1,000 feet.”
  • The second definition describes inclement weather as a “condition requiring the windshield wipers to be in continuous use due to rain, mist, snow, fog, or other precipitation or atmospheric moisture.”

The daylight running lights on your vehicle are not adequate for this law; you must use your headlights.

(photo courtesy of Flickr)