Section 32-5-242

Requirements as to head lamps and auxiliary driving lamps.

(a) Visibility distance and mounted height of lamps.

(1) Whenever requirement is hereinafter declared as to the distance from which certain lamps and devices shall render objects visible or within which such lamps or devices shall be visible, said provisions shall apply during the times stated in Section 32-5-240 in respect to a vehicle without load when upon a straight, level, unlighted highway under normal atmospheric conditions unless a different time or condition is expressly stated.

(2) Whenever requirement is hereinafter declared as to the mounted height of lamps or devices it shall mean from the center of such lamp or device to the level ground upon which the vehicle stands when such vehicle is without a load.

(b) Multiple-beam road-lighting equipment. Except as hereinafter provided, the head lamps or the auxiliary driving lamp or the auxiliary passing lamp or combination thereof on motor vehicles other than motorcycles or motor-driven cycles shall be so arranged that the driver may select at will between distributions of light projected to different elevations and such lamps may, in addition, be so arranged that such selection can be made automatically, subject to the following limitations:

(1) There shall be an uppermost distribution of light, or composite beam, so aimed and of such intensity as to reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least 350 feet ahead for all conditions of loading.

(2) There shall be a lowermost distribution of light, or composite beam so aimed and of sufficient intensity to reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least 100 feet ahead; and on a straight level road under any condition of loading none of the high-intensity portion of the beam shall be directed to strike the eyes of an approaching driver.

(3) Every new motor vehicle, other than a motorcycle or motor-driven cycle, registered hereafter in this state, which has multiple-beam road-lighting equipment shall be equipped with a beam indicator, which shall be lighted whenever the uppermost distribution of light from the head lamps is in use, and shall not otherwise be lighted. Said indicator shall be so designed and located that when lighted it will be readily visible without glare to the driver of the vehicle so equipped.

(c) Use of multiple-beam road-lighting equipment. Whenever a motor vehicle is being operated on a roadway or shoulder adjacent thereto during the times specified in subsection (a) of Section 32-5-240 the driver shall use a distribution of light, or composite beam, directed high enough and of sufficient intensity to reveal persons and vehicles at a safe distance in advance of the vehicle, subject to the following requirements and limitations:

(1) Whenever a driver of a vehicle approaches an oncoming vehicle within 500 feet, such driver shall use a distribution of light, or composite beam, so aimed that the glaring rays are not projected into the eyes of the oncoming driver. The lowermost distribution of light or composite beam, specified in subdivision (2) of subsection (b) of this section shall be deemed to avoid glare at all times, regardless of road contour and loading.

(2) Whenever the driver of a vehicle follows another vehicle within 200 feet to the rear, except when engaged in the act of overtaking and passing, such driver shall use a distribution of light permissible under this division other than the uppermost distribution of light specified in subdivision (1) of subsection (b) of this section.

(d) Single-beam road-lighting equipment. Head lamps arranged to provide a single distribution of light not supplemented by auxiliary driving lamps shall be permitted on motor vehicles manufactured and sold one year hereafter in lieu of multiple-beam road-lighting equipment herein specified if the single distribution of light complies with the following requirements and limitations:

(1) The head lamps shall be so aimed that when the vehicle is not loaded none of the high-intensity portion of the light shall, at a distance of 25 feet ahead, project higher than a level of five inches below the level of the center of the lamp from which it comes, and in no case higher than 42 inches above the level on which the vehicle stands at a distance of 75 feet ahead.

(2) The intensity shall be sufficient to reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least 200 feet.

(e) Lighting equipment on motor-driven cycles. The head lamp or head lamps upon every motor-driven cycle may be of the single-beam or multiple-beam type but in either event shall comply with the requirements and limitations as follows:

(1) Every said head lamp or head lamps on a motor-driven cycle shall be of sufficient intensity to reveal a person or a vehicle at a distance of not less than 100 feet when the motor-driven cycle is operated at any speed less than 25 miles per hour; at a distance of not less than 200 feet when the motor-driven cycle is operated at a speed of 25 or more miles per hour but less than 35 miles per hour; and at a distance of 300 feet when the motor-driven cycle is operated at a speed of 35 miles or more per hour.

(2) In the event the motor-driven cycle is equipped with a multiple-beam head lamp or head lamps the upper beam shall meet the minimum requirements set forth above and shall not exceed the limitations set forth in subdivision (2) of subsection (b) of this section.

(3) In the event the motor-driven cycle is equipped with a single-beam lamp or lamps, said lamp or lamps shall be so aimed that when the vehicle is loaded none of the high-intensity portion of light, at a distance of 25 feet ahead, shall project higher than the level of the center of the lamp from which it comes.

(f) Alternate road-lighting equipment. Any motor vehicle may be operated under the conditions specified in subsection (a) of Section 32-5-240 when equipped with two lighted lamps upon the front thereof capable of revealing persons and objects 75 feet ahead in lieu of lamps required in subsection (b) or subsection (d) of this section; provided, that at no time shall it be operated at a speed in excess of 20 miles per hour.

(g) Color of clearance lamps, side marker lamps and reflectors.

(1) Front clearance lamps and those marker lamps and reflectors mounted on the front or on the side near the front of a vehicle shall display or reflect an amber color.

(2) Rear clearance lamps and those marker lamps and reflectors mounted on the rear or on the sides near the rear of a vehicle shall display or reflect a red color.

(3) All lighting devices and reflectors mounted on the rear of any vehicle shall display or reflect a red color, except the stop light or other signal device, which may be red, amber or yellow, and except that the light illuminating the license plate or the light emitted by a back-up lamp shall be white.

(h) Mounting reflectors, clearance lamps and side marker lamps.

(1) Reflectors, when required by subsection (d) of Section 32-5-240 shall be mounted at a height not less than 24 inches and not higher than 60 inches above the ground on which the vehicle stands; except, that if the highest part of the permanent structure of the vehicle is less than 24 inches the reflector at such point shall be mounted as high as that part of the permanent structure will permit.

The rear reflectors on a pole trailer may be mounted on each side of the bolster or load.

Any required red reflector on the rear of a vehicle may be incorporated with the tail lamp, but such reflector shall meet all the other reflector requirements of this chapter.

(2) Clearance lamps shall be mounted on the permanent structure of the vehicle in such a manner as to indicate its extreme width and as near the top thereof as practicable. Clearance lamps and side marker lamps may be mounted in combination provided illumination is given as required herein with reference to both.

(i) Visibility of reflectors, clearance lamps and marker lamps.

(1) Every reflector upon any vehicle referred to in subsection (d) of Section 32-5-240 shall be of such size and characteristics and so maintained as to be readily visible at nighttime from all distances within 500 feet to 50 feet from the vehicle when directly in front of lawful upper beams of head lamps. Reflectors required to be mounted on the sides of the vehicle shall reflect the required color of light to the sides, and those mounted on the rear shall reflect a red color to the rear.

(2) Front and rear clearance lamps shall be capable of being seen and distinguished under normal atmospheric conditions at the times lights are required at a distance of 500 feet from the front and rear, respectively, of the vehicle.

(3) Side marker lamps shall be capable of being seen and distinguished under normal atmospheric conditions at the times lights are required at a distance of 500 feet from the side of the vehicle on which mounted.

(Acts 1927, No. 347, p. 348; Code 1940, T. 36, §42; Acts 1949, No. 517, p. 754, §12; Acts 1955, No. 273, p. 621, §1.)