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Police Forum Police Head Mod: Skidmark
Questions & info about the Motor Vehicle Act. Mature discussion only.

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Old 01-27-2016, 11:35 AM   #1
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Overstepping Boundries

Is an officer allowed to cut the wires on a LED light bar on a vehicle that he pulls over? An employee of mine was pulled over for having an uncovered "offroad" light bar. Conversation ensued Employee - "I will get covers for it" Officer - "We can't have you shining that thing in people eyes, lets fix that right here" The officer then cut the wires on the bar, as well wrote a ticket for uncovered offroad light.

Is this allowed or would this be considered vandalism?

Berz out.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:02 PM   #2
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Seems completely out of line to me. If your employee doesn't even have the offroad lights turned on, how does he know your employee will use them?

An equivalent situation to me is -- the cop knows your car can do 100km/h, but he only catches you doing 60km/h in a 30km/h zone. So he punctures your tires and proceeds to tell you -- "We can't have you driving this thing @100km/h in the 30km/h zone. Let's fix that right there."

I would pay the ticket for the uncovered light, but sue the PD for vandalism / property damage on the car.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:08 PM   #3
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Actually, I just thought of a better example.

Let's say Berz is caught exposing himself in public. The cop catches Berz and charges him with indecent exposure. But then he goes on and tells Berz, "We can't have you shining that "thing" in people's eyes. Let's fix that right here", and proceeds to cut off the weiner / bratwurst / whatever.

Don't think the cop would be able to get away with this one, right?
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:14 PM   #4
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Don't know if it is legal, but we have all heard of stories where people were pulled over for illegal tint on the front windows.
Car owner is issued a ticket for the tint and the officer scratches the tint with a key.

So is that not legal then?
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:14 PM   #5
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He has a meeting with Staff Sgt. and the officer on Friday. Will update with results.

Berz out.
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Old 01-27-2016, 12:17 PM   #6
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Actually, I just thought of a better example.

Let's say Berz is caught exposing himself in public. The cop catches Berz and charges him with indecent exposure. But then he goes on and tells Berz, "We can't have you shining that "thing" in people's eyes. Let's fix that right here", and proceeds to cut off the weiner / bratwurst / whatever.

Don't think the cop would be able to get away with this one, right?
He would need bolt cutters...

Berz out.
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Old 01-27-2016, 01:20 PM   #7
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If your employee doesn't even have the offroad lights turned on, how does he know your employee will use them?
The law is that the lights have to be covered when on road.
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Old 01-27-2016, 01:56 PM   #8
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Don't know if it is legal, but we have all heard of stories where people were pulled over for illegal tint on the front windows.
Car owner is issued a ticket for the tint and the officer scratches the tint with a key.

So is that not legal then?
Scratching the tint doesn't really damage anything (unless he gouges the glass itself). Plus, it's illegal for the tint to be there at all.

Having the light bar installed is legal, and using it off-road is permitted....snipping the wire affects the LEGAL use of it.
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Old 01-27-2016, 02:05 PM   #9
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Scratching the tint doesn't really damage anything .
It damages the tint. On someones car that paid to have it installed, legal or not. Where do you draw the line?

Berz out.
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Old 01-27-2016, 02:32 PM   #10
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The argument I remember reading in this forum to justify the peeling of the tint is some JPs ask for a sample to be presented as evidence in the case of a dispute.

I can't see how that would apply in OPs situation though.
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Old 01-27-2016, 02:32 PM   #11
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Don't know if it is legal, but we have all heard of stories where people were pulled over for illegal tint on the front windows.
Car owner is issued a ticket for the tint and the officer scratches the tint with a key.

So is that not legal then?
I got lucky, few years ago when I got pulled over for tinted front windows, the officer told me he was not gonna write up a ticket if I ripped off the front tint on the spot, which I did.

Definitely a good trade off.
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Old 01-27-2016, 02:34 PM   #12
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I have asked drivers to disable the illegal equipment at roadside. If that cannot be done then a #1 inspection order issued and the vehicle removed from the road....or you permit the driver to continue to break the law. I heard a JP dismiss a ticket in court and ream the Member for taking this option.
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Old 01-27-2016, 04:04 PM   #13
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I have asked drivers to disable the illegal equipment at roadside. If that cannot be done then a #1 inspection order issued and the vehicle removed from the road....or you permit the driver to continue to break the law. I heard a JP dismiss a ticket in court and ream the Member for taking this option.
So my original question stands. From an unbiased stand point, was the officer out of line cutting the wires to the light bar on his own accord?

Berz out.
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Old 01-27-2016, 05:43 PM   #14
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interested to see where this goes because i have been considering a small light bar that goes where my license plate currently is. i would obviously re-locate the license plate to the side like on the eco-boost f150's.
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Old 01-27-2016, 06:05 PM   #15
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I got lucky, few years ago when I got pulled over for tinted front windows, the officer told me he was not gonna write up a ticket if I ripped off the front tint on the spot, which I did.

Definitely a good trade off.
How do u rip it off on the spot? I thought u need a blow gun.
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Old 01-27-2016, 06:08 PM   #16
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Well the legalities are simple. They are not DOT approved and therefore illegal to use ON public highways and roads. So if your really worried about tickets, don't get one.

That being said, I live up north. It's dark for 14 hours a day for months. There is a high probability of animal collisions as well as shitty winter conditions for 6 months sometimes.

I personally know of at least 10 people with collisions with animals in the few years I've been up here. Me personally driving home from Prince George with my entire family in the car was saved a horrific accident by using my light bar. There were 3 horses that escaped and were on the highway. My light bar gave me enough distance to react that I was able to slow down, swerve and avoid a major collision. (I lost my drivers side mirror on one of the horses noses) Had I not had my light bar on I will say without a shadow of a doubt that I would have had a major collision with at least 1 of the horses.

I looked up the stats for collisions with animals and ICBC has approx 9000 RECORDED animal collisions for the southern and northern interior regions PER YEAR. Light bars without a doubt offer more time to react, better visibility, and improved reaction times at night. But they are "illegal"

This is where officer morality comes into effect in my opinion. Will I stop using my light bar? Fuck no. It's already saved me from a huge accident that could have been life altering. Why would officers choose to punish people for trying to be safer at night. Obviously idiots who have them just as a fashion statement don't count but those who live in rural areas..... I would say we have a pretty fucking solid reason to be using them.

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Old 01-27-2016, 06:11 PM   #17
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^ this is the thing though, i understand they're illegal to use ON road because they are strictly meant for OFF road but is illegal to even have them mounted up?
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Old 01-27-2016, 06:17 PM   #18
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it almost sounds like they're legal if mounted and covered, and not legal if mounted and uncovered
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:05 PM   #19
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Legal if mounted and covered yes. Legal to use on logging roads and FSR.

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Old 01-27-2016, 09:18 PM   #20
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How do u rip it off on the spot? I thought u need a blow gun.
I believe it was old tint, take a finer nail to one corner and just tear out the rest.

Only thing you're left with is the sticky residue which was time consuming to clean
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Old 01-28-2016, 08:24 AM   #21
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it almost sounds like they're legal if mounted and covered, and not legal if mounted and uncovered

Bingo! Uncovered, they are considered "unauthorized lights", covered they are "off road lights" and permitted on a "highway".

Would I cut the wiring...personally no...I would offer the options I outlined. In the cases I enountered the driver was always able to disconnect the wires...sometimes using my leatherman.
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Old 01-28-2016, 08:30 AM   #22
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Legal if mounted and covered yes. Legal to use on logging roads and FSR.

Berz out.

Legal for use on anything that is not a "highway"....some logging roads can be considered "highways"
"highway" includes

(a) every highway within the meaning of the Transportation Act,
(b) every road, street, lane or right of way designed or intended for or used by the general public for the passage of vehicles, and
(c) every private place or passageway to which the public, for the purpose of the parking or servicing of vehicles, has access or is invited,
but does not include an industrial road;

Off-road lamps
4.25 Despite section 4.04 (2) (c), a vehicle equipped with off-road lamps when on a highway must have the off-road lamps concealed with opaque covers.
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Old 01-28-2016, 09:31 AM   #23
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If you're going to run a light bar at least keep the tools you need to remove or reaim it in the vehicle. I have one on my Cherokee and I have the allen wrenches in the glove box to either remove it or aim it down/backwards. That way I can keep it legal when I don't need it with about 30 seconds of effort.

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It damages the tint. On someones car that paid to have it installed, legal or not. Where do you draw the line?

Berz out.
Tint that has to come off one way or another, personally I'd be taking it off roadside rather than deal with a VI.
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Old 01-28-2016, 09:40 AM   #24
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If you're going to run a light bar at least keep the tools you need to remove or reaim it in the vehicle. I have one on my Cherokee and I have the allen wrenches in the glove box to either remove it or aim it down/backwards. That way I can keep it legal when I don't need it with about 30 seconds of effort.
Friend of mine did that when stopped last summer - his light bar is mounted between the sides of the bull bar on his Samurai, so when a cop mentioned it to him, he just gave it a twist so it was pointing at the grill. Said the cop chuckled and sent him on his way (after a little more admiration of his wicked little Sammi/Sidekick hybrid).
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Old 01-28-2016, 04:19 PM   #25
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There was a very simple fix to this, turn the light around. That's how I have them on my truck when I am not using it. As soon as I hit an FSR or mine road, I loosen the wingnut on the end and turn it the other way round.

I used to have the cover for mine, but someone stole it, or I otherwise lost it at some point.

Officer sounds like he was having a bad day to cut the wire.
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