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When Should Florida Drivers Use their Hazard Lights?

rainEvery year, Florida drivers face a lot of rain. Driving in the rain can be a challenging task. It is important for all Florida drivers to understand basic state driving laws in relation to driving in inclement weather. If you or someone you know has been injured or killed due to someone carelessly driving in the rain or harsh weather, the Law Offices of Robert Dixon can help.  Highly qualified Miami auto accident attorney, Robert Dixon, will personally assess the merits of your case and come up with a strategy for your specific situation. Our firm proudly represents clients throughout South Florida.

In harsh weather, drivers often fail to take the proper steps required by law. For example, under Florida law, drivers are required to turn on their headlights when it is raining. Turning on headlights increases visibility on the roads, which is a critical aspect of safe driving in the rain. Motorcycle riders are always required to have their lights on regardless of the time of day or weather conditions.

As drivers on the roads, we may use our hazard lights for a number of reasons, yet only a few of those reasons are allowed under Florida law. Motorists often turn on their hazard lights when driving in the rain; however, it is illegal to drive with your hazards on while driving in Florida. In fact, hazard lights should only be turned on when a driver is pulled over to the side of the road, or the vehicle has stalled – essentially, hazard lights are only permissible when the vehicle is stationary. In this context, hazard lights can be a valuable tool to alert other drivers of your presence as well as signal that you may need help. The only time a moving vehicle can use hazard lights in Florida is when the vehicle is being driven in a funeral procession.

Using hazard lights while driving can reduce visibility and mislead other drivers on the road into thinking a car is stopped or stalled when it is not. Hazard lights make it difficult for other drivers on the road to assess whether a motorist is braking or using a turn signal. The flashing hazards can be distracting and misleading in heavy traffic and inclement weather. Additionally, first responders often look for flashers to assess if that driver needs help. This type of confusion can lead to an increased risk of motor vehicle accidents on the roads.

If someone has incorrectly used their hazard lights and caused a collision, they may be liable to an injured party for any resulting damages, including medical bills, lost wages, property damage and more. The compensation an injured party may receive depends on the nature and extent of the damages incurred.

Driving in harsh weather can be difficult for many reasons. In most instances, drivers can continue to drive as long as they are cautious and careful. If the driving conditions on the road become extremely hazardous, however, drivers should pull over and park until the weather conditions improve. If you or someone you know has been injured in a motor vehicle accident in poor weather conditions, you may be able to take legal action. To learn more about your options, contact us online or call us today at 1-877-499-HURT (4878) for a free, confidential consultation.