Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 19. Public Safety
Agency 30. Department of State Police
Chapter 70. Motor Vehicle Safety Inspection Regulations

19VAC30-70-190. Signal device (intention to stop or turn), hazard lights, stop lamp.

A. Any motor vehicle may be equipped with a switch that will permit all turn signal lamps to flash simultaneously.

B. Supplemental turn signals, properly wired into the turn signal circuit, may be installed. These may be either approved type turn signals or clearance lamps.

C. Single face lamps are permissible on the front, except tractor units shall be equipped with two-faced lamps mounted on the front fenders or on or near the front of the vehicle.

D. Inspect for and reject if:

1. Motor vehicle, or trailer, except an antique vehicle not originally equipped with a stop lamp, is not equipped with at least two brake lights of an approved type (DOT or SAE-S) that automatically exhibits a red or amber light to the rear when the brake pedal is actuated.

2. Every passenger car manufactured for the 1986 or subsequent model year and multipurpose passenger vehicle, truck, or bus whose overall width is less than 80 inches, manufactured September 1, 1993, and subsequent model year is not equipped with a supplemental center high mount stop lamp of an approved type (DOT or SAE-U, U1 or U2) mounted at the vertical centerline of the vehicle which functions only in cooperation with the vehicle's stop lamps, brake lights, and hazard lights. Any other vehicle on which a supplemental center high mount stop lamp is mounted shall have the lamp mounted at the vertical center line of the vehicle. The lamps shall be of an approved type and shall function only in conjunction with the stop lamps. The high mount stop lamp must be steady burning and not wired to flash with turn signals or other wig-wag device.

"Multipurpose passenger vehicle" means any motor vehicle that is (i) designed to carry no more than 10 persons and (ii) constructed either on a truck chassis or with special features for occasional off-road use.

NOTE: Camper shells or rear spoilers that obscure the original manufacturer's high mount stop lamp must be equipped with a center high mount stop lamp in good working order.

NOTE: The original manufacturer's center high mount stop lamp will not be considered for inspection if it is obscured by a camper shell or rear spoiler that is equipped with a center high mount stop lamp of an approved type.

NOTE: No sticker or other foreign material shall be affixed to the vehicle in such a manner so as to obscure the center high mount stop lamp.

3. Proper signals do not go on with each throw of the switch or if stop signals do not go on with slightest pressure on the brake pedal. Turn signals may flash, however stop signals may not flash except when the vehicle is equipped with a brake warning system or device which will cause the brake lights to flash when the vehicle is in motion but committed to an emergency or panic stop.

4. Motor vehicle was manufactured after January 1, 1955, and is not equipped with approved signaling devices (SAE-I).

5. Vehicle is not equipped with a turn signal if such signal is not working properly or does not continue to function in the same manner as when it was originally manufactured. (The turn signal switch shall lock in place when positioned for a left turn or a right turn, and the turn signal indicators must function. Do not reject a vehicle if the self-canceling mechanism in the switch does not function when the steering wheel is rotated.).

6. Switch is not convenient to the driver and not of an approved type.

7. Any vehicle so constructed so as to prevent the operator from making a hand and arm signal, if such vehicle is not equipped with an approved type signaling device.

8. Turn signal lens is not clear or amber to the front, or red or amber to the rear. Lens or bulb color has been altered or modified. If the turn signal lens is clear, then the bulb shall be amber.

NOTE: The pink color lens found on 1998 and 1999 Honda Accords emit the proper color light (amber) when the lamp is activated. There may be other manufacturers using the same configuration and are not in violation of the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards.

9. Wiring or electrical connections are defective or filaments do not burn.

NOTE: LED (light-emitting diode) lights with a clear lens are acceptable if of an approved type. For those vehicles that are equipped with a multiple LED light (not filament-burning bulbs), they will pass inspection if more than 50% of the diode lights are burning.

10. Lens has a piece broken from it. The lens may have one or more cracks provided an off-color light does not project through the cracks. Taping or gluing cracks or pieces is not permitted.

11. The hazard warning signal operating unit does not operate independently of the ignition or equivalent switch and when activated cause all turn signals to flash simultaneously.

NOTE: They are deemed not to be installed if none of the lights burn or flash when the switch is activated and the hazard warning signal flasher unit has been removed.

12. Device is not mounted near the rear for rear signals or near the front for front signals (except supplemental turn signals) or if the signal is hidden by a bolster or other part of body chassis.

13. All "Class A" signals are not mounted at least three feet apart. (This does not apply to the combination rear signal device.) However, signal lamps that are mounted as far apart as practical inside and at the rear of the frame so as to be properly visible will meet inspection requirements.

14. Any vehicle has wire, unapproved lens or plastic covers, any other materials that are not original equipment or any colored material placed on or in front of the signal device (intention to stop or turn), hazard lights, or stop lamp.

Statutory Authority

§ 46.2-1165 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR545-01-07 § 19, eff. May 1, 1990; amended, Virginia Register Volume 10, Issue 8, eff. February 9, 1994; Volume 21, Issue 4, eff. September 22, 2004; Volume 24, Issue 8, eff. March 1, 2008; Volume 28, Issue 24, eff. August 1, 2012; Volume 32, Issue 24, eff. October 3, 2016; Volume 36, Issue 25, eff. September 4, 2020; Volume 40, Issue 10, eff. February 1, 2024.

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