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Questions & info about the Motor Vehicle Act. Mature discussion only.

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Old 03-13-2014, 09:41 PM   #1
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DRL's...

So i went through a cellphone check a few weeks ago, the Officer asked me why i don't have DRL's. I told him (very politely) that they are the fog lights, and come that way from the factory. He told me that i'm lucky, he would normally give me a VI... Seems like something that could happen in the future, this would obviously be enough to have any VI thrown out, right? (Screenshot from car manual)



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Old 03-13-2014, 10:00 PM   #2
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Not trying to hate, but some officers are misinformed.

I had one RCMP officer tell me at a roadblock that my amber foglights were illegal. It was around 1AM and foggy. I had them on b/c I was heading to Hwy 7 (approx. 1km away from the exit 44 road block location) where there are no street lights. She told me to turn them off or I would get a VI, so I decided not to argue... however, my fog lights were factory Honda, just with 4000k halogen bulbs.

My guess is, if you got the VI you could just take your car back to the dealer and they can verify that it is how the car came from the factory. Get this in writing and keep it with you just in case. That's what I did the day after lol. I also have the copy of the law that says driving lights can be amber as well as white. Never hurts to cover your ass
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Old 03-13-2014, 10:18 PM   #3
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The fog lights on a Nissan Murano and Acura MDX are the DRL's as well...
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:42 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by PARANOiA-R34 View Post
Not trying to hate, but some officers are misinformed.
So are some users...

Quote:
I had one RCMP officer tell me at a roadblock that my amber foglights were illegal. It was around 1AM and foggy. I had them on b/c I was heading to Hwy 7 (approx. 1km away from the exit 44 road block location) where there are no street lights. She told me to turn them off or I would get a VI, so I decided not to argue... however, my fog lights were factory Honda, just with 4000k halogen bulbs.

My guess is, if you got the VI you could just take your car back to the dealer and they can verify that it is how the car came from the factory.
If you changed the bulbs to 4000k, then that's not how the car came from factory, is it?
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Old 03-16-2014, 08:42 PM   #5
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MVA states you can only have fog lights on in substitute of headlights under certain environmental conditions. So whether it is factory or not, you aren't legally allowed to have them on (and ONLY the foglights on) during normal driving conditions, day or night. So if you really have no true DRL's, you can still be ticketed on a clear summer day.
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Old 03-16-2014, 09:00 PM   #6
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Hang on. From the factory, all 2013+ Mustangs sold in canada have HID's. This means the fog lights are the daytime running lights. So what you're saying is I can be ticketed for driving a completely factory stock car purchased brand new from a BC Ford dealer. Basically what you're saying, with the DRL's coming from the factory as fog lights, means Ford is illegal in selling me the car as it's not road legal?
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Old 03-16-2014, 09:42 PM   #7
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MVA really needs updating...

all the factory fogs aren't independent anymore...at least none of my vehicles do...headlights don't turn off when fog is on
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Old 03-16-2014, 11:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
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So are some users...


If you changed the bulbs to 4000k, then that's not how the car came from factory, is it?
Bulbs died. Factory was around 3000k I believe, but the 4000's were on sale the day I had to replace them... perhaps I am misinformed, but I also don't think the manufacturer should be selling cars that have illegal aspects from the factory. The way they are labelled in both the owner's manual and the options list suggested to me that they were for use to supplement the headlamps in less-than-ideal driving conditions which is apparently not what it says in the MVA? I see other cars driven with foglights on all the time, many of which are factory (not talking about the super yellow "tuner" ones") so I assumed it was not an issue especially like I said, I was doing it to get better vision in the area where I was driving
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Old 03-16-2014, 11:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spidey View Post
MVA states you can only have fog lights on in substitute of headlights under certain environmental conditions. So whether it is factory or not, you aren't legally allowed to have them on (and ONLY the foglights on) during normal driving conditions, day or night. So if you really have no true DRL's, you can still be ticketed on a clear summer day.

Hopefully you can show me where that is laid out as my understanding of the law contradicts that.


4.11 of the MVA states that fog lamps may be used in place of headlamps provided that the other necessary marking and indicator lights are also illuminated. That section at least doesn't prevent you from using them all the time, only giving a provision for them to be used in lieu of your normal headlamps. (Again, if there is another section somewhere I'm missing I would love to know it - I pride myself on having an unnatural knowledge of the MVA and MVSA.) The federal Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations state that:

Provided that the lamps have not been altered in any way from factory spec (and also assuming that Ford put appropriate optics and lenses in the fog lights) I don't see how the use of the fog lamps as a DRL would be illegal.
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Old 03-16-2014, 11:29 PM   #10
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once had an officer at a roadblock tell me to turn my fogs off on the grounds that my "foglights weren't allowed to be on cause the condition didn't warrant it"

nowhere in the mva does it state at what time foglights are legally allowed to be turned on. ergo, i can have them on whenever i want

smiled, nodded okay, switched them off, drove off and turned them right back on. so yes, some cops are misinformed. not even worth the effort to try sometimes
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Old 03-16-2014, 11:57 PM   #11
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Funny how I went through the exact situation at the beginning of the year. Long story short, my VI got thrown out even though it took over a month.

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Old 03-17-2014, 09:07 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brianrietta View Post
Hopefully you can show me where that is laid out as my understanding of the law contradicts that.






4.11 of the MVA states that fog lamps may be used in place of headlamps provided that the other necessary marking and indicator lights are also illuminated. That section at least doesn't prevent you from using them all the time, only giving a provision for them to be used in lieu of your normal headlamps. (Again, if there is another section somewhere I'm missing I would love to know it - I pride myself on having an unnatural knowledge of the MVA and MVSA.) The federal Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations state that:



Provided that the lamps have not been altered in any way from factory spec (and also assuming that Ford put appropriate optics and lenses in the fog lights) I don't see how the use of the fog lamps as a DRL would be illegal.
where did I say you weren't allowed to use your fogs all the time?

You are ALLOWED to have your fogs on IF they are on along with your headlights

You are NOT ALLOWED to have ONLY your fog lights on UNLESS it is necessary due to the environmental conditions.

We all know that just because it came factory doesn't always mean it is "legal", as traffic laws and regulations are slightly different from province to province.

The reality is, having your fogs as DRLs is not as big of a deal in the daytime, as it really doesn't cause any issues regarding visibility for you, or other drivers... When it is dark, that is another thing.

Fog lamps

4.11 (1) A motor vehicle may be equipped with 2 fog lamps, mounted on the front of the vehicle below the headlamps, that are capable of displaying only white or amber light.

(2) Each fog lamp must be

(a) mounted not more than 30 cm below the headlamps, and

(b) adjusted and aimed so that, at a distance of 8 m from the lamp, the centre of the beam is at least 10 cm below the height of the fog lamp.

(3) The fog lamp wiring and switch must permit simultaneous operation of the parking lamps, tail lamps, licence plate lamp and, if required, clearance lamps.

(4) The operator of a vehicle may use fog lamps instead of headlamps when atmospheric conditions make the use of headlamps disadvantageous.
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Old 03-17-2014, 02:24 PM   #13
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where did I say you weren't allowed to use your fogs all the time?

You are ALLOWED to have your fogs on IF they are on along with your headlights

You are NOT ALLOWED to have ONLY your fog lights on UNLESS it is necessary due to the environmental conditions.

We all know that just because it came factory doesn't always mean it is "legal", as traffic laws and regulations are slightly different from province to province.

The reality is, having your fogs as DRLs is not as big of a deal in the daytime, as it really doesn't cause any issues regarding visibility for you, or other drivers... When it is dark, that is another thing.

Fog lamps

4.11 (1) A motor vehicle may be equipped with 2 fog lamps, mounted on the front of the vehicle below the headlamps, that are capable of displaying only white or amber light.

(2) Each fog lamp must be

(a) mounted not more than 30 cm below the headlamps, and

(b) adjusted and aimed so that, at a distance of 8 m from the lamp, the centre of the beam is at least 10 cm below the height of the fog lamp.

(3) The fog lamp wiring and switch must permit simultaneous operation of the parking lamps, tail lamps, licence plate lamp and, if required, clearance lamps.
(4) The operator of a vehicle may use fog lamps instead of headlamps when atmospheric conditions make the use of headlamps disadvantageous

RE: Part highlighted in red. This is what i'm saying. When i turn my car on, the fog lights come on (as DRL's) i CANNOT control this, the car is programmed this way. However, this is illegal?

RE: Part highlighted in green. This makes no sense whatsoever. If i were to get a VI, there's no way in hell it's my fault. One should be able to assume any vehicle you purchase new from a factory authorized dealership in the province of with you reside, will be legal to drive in the same province, right? If i ever get this VI, first thing i'm doing is driving back to the dealer i bought it from and raising hell. this is bullshit.
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Old 03-17-2014, 03:00 PM   #14
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Totally understand your frustration. I would be pissed ass well. You do however have the option of keeping your headlights on all the time so both the fogs and the headlights are on, or just your headlights. I know it is a pain. To be honest, if you explain and show the car manual to the Police who is stopping you for having your fogs on, I am sure he/she would understand.

I did a quick google search regarding Ontario's traffic laws, and it doesn't appear they have any restriction with fog lamp use.... Someone correct me if I am wrong.

Found this from Alberta's MVA:

(6)
Fog lamps on a motor vehicle must be used only at the same
time the low beams on the headlamps are used.
(7)
Despite subsection (6), fog lamps may be used without
headlamps if the weather and road conditions make the use of
headlamps disadvantageous.

Manitoba states:

Use of fog lamps

37(12) The lamps to which reference is made in subsection (11) may be lighted on a highway

(a) alone; or

(b) in conjunction with headlamps, on low beam, required under section 35 or 36.

So there are discrepancies from province to province.... which sucks for the consumer since cars aren't made for each province's regulations.

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Old 03-17-2014, 03:45 PM   #15
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4.01 A person who drives or operates a vehicle on a highway must illuminate the lamps required by this Division

(a) from 1/2 hour after sunset to 1/2 hour before sunrise, and

(b) at any other time when, due to insufficient light or unfavourable atmospheric conditions, objects on the highway are not clearly discernible at a distance of 150 m.


This DOES NOT state that you must operate your headlamps during the day.

4.09 (1) A motor vehicle may be equipped with 2 auxiliary driving lamps, mounted on the front of the vehicle at a height of not less than 40 cm and not more than 1.06 m, that are capable of displaying onlywhite light.

(2) An auxiliary driving lamp must be directed so that the high intensity portion of the beam is, at a distance of 8 m from the lamp, at least 12 cm below the height of the lamp and, at a distance of 25 m from the lamp, not higher than 1.06 m from the road surface.

(3) An auxiliary driving lamp must operate so that it is illuminated only when the upper beam of a multiple beam headlamp is illuminated.


This does state that you may only operate auxiliary lamps when the high beam is active.

4.08 A motor vehicle may be equipped with daytime running lamps, mounted on the front of the vehicle at a height of not less than 30 cm and not more than 2.11 m, that comply with the requirements of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act (Canada).

I've already established in my first post that fog lamps may be used as DRL's according to the federal Motor Vehicle Safety Act, which as you know are the guidelines that British Columbia uses.


Now here's my problem with your interpretation of the law. In no place is there a requirement for the headlamps to be on all the time, only that daytime running lights, on vehicles so equipped must have them on. I linked the section of the regulations pertaining to auxiliary driving lamps as they provide a precedent for the acts specifying specific requirements for a bulb to be used, which is not present in the section involving fog lamps. Fog lamps according to Transport Canada can be used as DRL's. Having the fog lights on, without the headlamps on, is not illegal, provided that the fog lamps act as the Daytime Running Lamps. In the case of a vehicle where the low beam or high beam at low power is the specified Daytime Running Lamp, then operating the fog lamps without the regular headlamps being illuminated would be illegal. That is not the case if the fog lamps are the factory daytime running lamps...
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Old 03-17-2014, 04:00 PM   #16
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4.01 A person who drives or operates a vehicle on a highway must illuminate the lamps required by this Division

(a) from 1/2 hour after sunset to 1/2 hour before sunrise, and

(b) at any other time when, due to insufficient light or unfavourable atmospheric conditions, objects on the highway are not clearly discernible at a distance of 150 m.


This DOES NOT state that you must operate your headlamps during the day.

4.09 (1) A motor vehicle may be equipped with 2 auxiliary driving lamps, mounted on the front of the vehicle at a height of not less than 40 cm and not more than 1.06 m, that are capable of displaying onlywhite light.

(2) An auxiliary driving lamp must be directed so that the high intensity portion of the beam is, at a distance of 8 m from the lamp, at least 12 cm below the height of the lamp and, at a distance of 25 m from the lamp, not higher than 1.06 m from the road surface.

(3) An auxiliary driving lamp must operate so that it is illuminated only when the upper beam of a multiple beam headlamp is illuminated.


This does state that you may only operate auxiliary lamps when the high beam is active.

4.08 A motor vehicle may be equipped with daytime running lamps, mounted on the front of the vehicle at a height of not less than 30 cm and not more than 2.11 m, that comply with the requirements of the Motor Vehicle Safety Act (Canada).

I've already established in my first post that fog lamps may be used as DRL's according to the federal Motor Vehicle Safety Act, which as you know are the guidelines that British Columbia uses.


Now here's my problem with your interpretation of the law. In no place is there a requirement for the headlamps to be on all the time, only that daytime running lights, on vehicles so equipped must have them on. I linked the section of the regulations pertaining to auxiliary driving lamps as they provide a precedent for the acts specifying specific requirements for a bulb to be used, which is not present in the section involving fog lamps. Fog lamps according to Transport Canada can be used as DRL's. Having the fog lights on, without the headlamps on, is not illegal, provided that the fog lamps act as the Daytime Running Lamps. In the case of a vehicle where the low beam or high beam at low power is the specified Daytime Running Lamp, then operating the fog lamps without the regular headlamps being illuminated would be illegal. That is not the case if the fog lamps are the factory daytime running lamps...
The problem is, the BC MVA contradicts what Transport Canada states.... This whole thing is honestly giving me a headache lol.

- All cars sold in Canada must have DRL's, as of the last 20 somewhat years

- Transport Canada states fog lamps can be used as DRL

- BC MVA states vehicles MAY have DRLs not MUST

- BC MVA states having only fog lights on is only permitted under certain conditions

- cars coming from factory with fog lamps acting as DRL

Is there a problem? Yup.

But if you are driving in BC, you should abide by the BC MVA, as that is what the Police officers are going to be enforcing. Just like there are different bylaws for different municipalities within BC.

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Old 03-17-2014, 05:37 PM   #17
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- BC MVA states having only fog lights on is only permitted under certain conditions
See that's where I think the breakdown between law enforcement and manufacturers, lawmakers and us lies.

4.11 (4) The operator of a vehicle may use fog lamps instead of headlamps when atmospheric conditions make the use of headlamps disadvantageous.

If I'm reading your responses correctly, this is the part that you're referring to. Daredevil, myself and manufacturers (on the virtue of fogs being used as drl's in Canada) treat 4.11 (4) as simply allowing you to disregard 4.01 when conditions are foggy or whatnot. This to us doesn't read as fogs cannot be used instead of headlamps unless the conditions warrant, but as headlamps may be forgone under the right circumstances. As I pointed out earlier, if the intent of the law was to prohibit fog usage without headlamps, there would be a "4.11 (5) A fog lamp must operate so that it is illuminated only when the lower beam of a multiple beam headlamp is illuminated." Because there is no specific mention in Division 4 that you cannot use it (and there is precedent set in the auxiliary lights section that if there was to be a prohibition it would be noted) I feel like police action against people running only fogs is a carryover from the long period before seperate drl's where the headlamps included the factory function of the Daytime Running Lamp (which would have to be active at all times if so equipped). Now granted the majority of people running just fogs are probably running aftermarket fog lights that shouldn't be there, or have disabled the factory DRL function, which is of course wrong, but I see no cause in the MVA and MVSA are laid out today for the Mustang's layout to be illegal.
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Old 03-17-2014, 06:26 PM   #18
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See that's where I think the breakdown between law enforcement and manufacturers, lawmakers and us lies.

4.11 (4) The operator of a vehicle may use fog lamps instead of headlamps when atmospheric conditions make the use of headlamps disadvantageous.

If I'm reading your responses correctly, this is the part that you're referring to. Daredevil, myself and manufacturers (on the virtue of fogs being used as drl's in Canada) treat 4.11 (4) as simply allowing you to disregard 4.01 when conditions are foggy or whatnot. This to us doesn't read as fogs cannot be used instead of headlamps unless the conditions warrant, but as headlamps may be forgone under the right circumstances. As I pointed out earlier, if the intent of the law was to prohibit fog usage without headlamps, there would be a "4.11 (5) A fog lamp must operate so that it is illuminated only when the lower beam of a multiple beam headlamp is illuminated." Because there is no specific mention in Division 4 that you cannot use it (and there is precedent set in the auxiliary lights section that if there was to be a prohibition it would be noted) I feel like police action against people running only fogs is a carryover from the long period before seperate drl's where the headlamps included the factory function of the Daytime Running Lamp (which would have to be active at all times if so equipped). Now granted the majority of people running just fogs are probably running aftermarket fog lights that shouldn't be there, or have disabled the factory DRL function, which is of course wrong, but I see no cause in the MVA and MVSA are laid out today for the Mustang's layout to be illegal.
You make a good point. And I can definitely see how it can be interpreted in more than one way. But the section uses the word disadvantageous, which means using your headlights would cause worsened visibility. If it stated that fog lamps could be used instead of headlamps if the use of headlamps were not advantageous, than I would agree that it meant during the day (where headlights are not needed), you could use just your foglamps.

I am not disagreeing or agreeing with this law. I would personally never stop a car in daylight for having just foglights. And as you stated, it is pretty easy to tell when cars are equipped with aftermarket fog lamps that are not legal.
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Old 03-17-2014, 07:26 PM   #19
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You make a good point. And I can definitely see how it can be interpreted in more than one way. But the section uses the word disadvantageous, which means using your headlights would cause worsened visibility. If it stated that fog lamps could be used instead of headlamps if the use of headlamps were not advantageous, than I would agree that it meant during the day (where headlights are not needed), you could use just your foglamps.

I fully understand that my "precedent being set by the wording in a different section" isn't actually indicative of the original intent of the law as for all I know each section was written by a different person, but for the purposes showing an example of healthy, clean, researched debate in the Police Forum for a change I'll carry on. I tend to think that a judge would initially look at the wording as described in 4.11 (4) and on any given day and depending on his understanding of automobiles and lighting technology/optimal usage go 50-50 on the issue. With the fact that there is no 'specific' (like the auxiliary lamps) prohibition and the fact that in 4.26 the term "may only" is used (meaning that that wording could have been chosen for 4.11 as well) I would hope that the court would side with the vehicle owner.

4.26 A sequential direction lamp may only be used by emergency vehicles and public and private utility highway maintenance vehicles.

The thing is that fog lamps should not be on unless needed, although that's not actually common knowledge as few people realize that over illuminating the foreground takes optical focus away from down the road where it is necessary for the majority of driving. Very few automotive manufacturers actually produce optimal lighting solutions for their vehicles; a stop to candlepowerforums.com to the vehicle lighting section would probably be illuminating (pun intended) for anyone who isn't an optical engineer.

And as a final point I would note that as you mention it's highly unlikely that a respectful law abiding citizen would be ticketed for the lighting infraction (which could go to court and have this sort of evidence provided against the charge). I suppose it's more likely that this would be an issue if a member is having a bad day and the vehicle owner was being a douche but in that case I would guess the vehicle would be off for a N&O anyways and not a simple ticket that could be contested in court.
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Old 03-17-2014, 08:01 PM   #20
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4.26 A sequential direction lamp may only be used by emergency vehicles and public and private utility highway maintenance vehicles.
Oh man it gets better, so Mustang taillights are illegal (technically speaking) in BC too. This is too funny.
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Old 03-17-2014, 08:16 PM   #21
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Oh man it gets better, so Mustang taillights are illegal (technically speaking) in BC too. This is too funny.
Ha, no, you're good there, traffic control devices are the target of that section.

"sequential lamp" means a lamp with bulbs lighted in sequence to indicate an arrow or direction for the purpose of directing traffic;

Where the MVA has fallen behind technology though is with LED's. Does the term "lamp" apply to multiple independently controlled circuit boards with LED's like in the case of the stang tails? (That is how I'm guessing they work...) I would assume so, although there is no explanation given for the definition of "lamp" as it wasn't necessary the last time there was any major revision to the BC acts and regulations.

4.17 (1) A motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer on a highway must be equipped with 2 stop lamps, mounted on the rear of the motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer, that are visible to the rear on both sides of the motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer at an angle of 45 from the longitudinal axis of the motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer.

(5) A vehicle may be equipped with one additional centre-mounted stop lamp that is capable of displaying only red light visible to the rear.


Does having more than one "light" per side illuminating as part of the stop light system violate the law? Maybe to the letter, not to the spirit. For all I know there's more about sequential turn signals in the MVSA but I'm not about to dig through that tonight. Maybe tomorrow.
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Old 03-17-2014, 08:26 PM   #22
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I think we can all agree how damn outdated the MVA is.
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The FMVSS and CMVSS are very outdated and are in serious need of attention.

The MVA is a joke, and police need to be trained in accordance to it. I've had a cop argue with me about my location of a stock parking light, insisting that I had modified it, but completely oblivious to my lack of DRL.

Don't know why I'm complaining about it, but it can get annoying when PO's insist factory equipment is illegal.

The latest one I've heard recently is that a heads up display is considered "distracted driving"
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Old 03-18-2014, 07:41 AM   #24
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....... and that is why I am not in Traffic folks! lol
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Old 03-18-2014, 11:07 AM   #25
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....... and that is why I am not in Traffic folks! lol
Explains a lot about zulutango, too!
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