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Use of fog lights when there is no fog?

By JC - 13 March 2011 44

What is it with all these clowns with modern cars fitted with fog lights that choose to drive with them on even when there is no fog? Rule 217 of the national road rules, link below, clearly states “The driver of a vehicle fitted with front fog lights or rear fog lights must not operate the fog light unless the driver is driving in fog or other hazardous weather conditions causing reduced visibility.”,  so why do people use them?

Had a bit of a scare the other night on William Hovell Drive when I had a car coming towards me using their fog lights with no fog around. The passenger side light was out so could see 3 lights coming my way and being so dark and their lights so bright I couldn’t actually see their vehicle. With the passengers side out the drivers side fog light look all the world like there was a motor bike overtaking the other vehicle in my lane. So not good, almost gave me a heart attack. So one good reason why these things should not be used except in fog as stated in the rules.

As a test I turned the ones fitted to my car on the other night to see what they actually do with no fog around (of course their were no other cars around at the time). All I found was they lit up the road for about 5m in front of my car, so really pretty useless things to be using if there is no fog.

Would love to hear from one of these clowns that use them as to what they are hoping to achieve?

What’s Your opinion?

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44 Responses to
Use of fog lights when there is no fog?
Innovation 4:15 pm 13 Mar 11

The “light on the dash” is built in to the switch which is closer to my knee than eye level. It’s not an aftermarket switch so must have passed ADR’s but it is very frustrating.

screaming banshee 4:10 pm 13 Mar 11

I’m surprised there haven’t been many responses to the effect of “But my car has driving lights not foglights and I’m allowed to have them on blah blah bullshit”

If you’re vehicle is fitted with rear fog lights and there is someone behind you driving with their high-beams on, it probably because your rear fog lights are on and you are pissing them off.

Holden Caulfield 3:44 pm 13 Mar 11

I agree with the fog light theory, but the number of new cars fitted with daytime running lights is increasing. These lights are perfectly legal. On some cars the DRLs are fitted low-ish to the ground, where you might normally expect to see foglights.

AaronT 3:09 pm 13 Mar 11

Well my car has what i think is a good feature, which should be the standard

You have to consciously turn them on, as they automatically revert to the off state when turning the car on.

It certainly annoys me the number of people driving around with both fog lights and high beam on all the time.

deye 2:10 pm 13 Mar 11

Deref said :

If you’re referring to those low-mounted lights, I don’t think they’re fog lights, are they? Aren’t fog lights yellow?

newer ones can also be white.

el 2:02 pm 13 Mar 11

Deref said :

If you’re referring to those low-mounted lights, I don’t think they’re fog lights, are they?

Yes, they’re fog lights.

Deref said :

Aren’t fog lights yellow?

They were in 1985, but technology has changed recently.

Rear-mounted fog-lights are just as bad, too. The only time I’ve seen them in use is at night time, and usually in the rain, causing a major visibility hazard (dazzling) to anyone following nearby.

georgesgenitals 1:54 pm 13 Mar 11

Until there’s some fear of getting booked, nothing will change.

54-11 1:38 pm 13 Mar 11

I agree wholeheartedly,JC. I’ve railed about these “wanker lights” on RA before. The fact that there is no enforcement action taken (I’ve seen many a cop car sail by these morons without a flicker of interest) show just how morally bankrupt the Stanhope govt is about road safety.

They can easily ping drivers a few k over the speed limit by robot speed cameras, all in the name of road safety, but not actually do anything about an easily-detected hazard that requires a cop presence and action.

Stanhope and the traffic authorities continued bleating about “speed kills” is hollow when these morons with wanker lights are allowed to continue endangering everyone else with absolute impunity.

dks00k 1:19 pm 13 Mar 11

Something that pisses me off also.

I put it down to the moronic attitude of a vast number of ACT motorists who either have…
a.) no knowledge of the road rules
b.) simply couldn’t care less as they believe the rules don’t apply to them, or
c.) plain incompetent

Just add it to the list of being able to stop wherever you like, ignore traffic lights, fail to give way to traffic ALREADY ON THE ROUNDABOUT, performing U-Turns at traffic lights or indeed where-ever you want……….

I put it down to the distinct lack of policing here in the ACT compared to other states.

When was the last time you heard of anyone copping a ticket for the improper use of fog lights? I doubt you have and I doubt that you will, even if those foglights, combined with poorly adjusted headlights, dazzle and blind oncoming traffic.

Deref 1:16 pm 13 Mar 11

If you’re referring to those low-mounted lights, I don’t think they’re fog lights, are they? Aren’t fog lights yellow?

deye 12:56 pm 13 Mar 11

There is one non fog time when they are handy to have on and that’s when you are driving in the national park at night, they help show up the rabbits, foxes and wombats.

Diggety 12:36 pm 13 Mar 11

It is silly to drive with them on with no fog, I agree.

But I don’t think many people realise they have them switched on, or even that it is illegal/not required

There are too many gadgets/indicators lights, etc. on modern cars I believe. I think it is difficult for a lot of drivers to know exactly what they have in operation.

Very annoying for sure.

Rawhide Kid Part3 12:31 pm 13 Mar 11

JC said :

Maybe the drivers think they look cool.

Maybe they think it is the High Beam.

JC 12:00 pm 13 Mar 11

I did say ‘choose’ to have them on, in your case it would appear to be accidental which I doubt is the case for most. Besides even if they did accidentally turn them on it should be obvious (except in daylight) that they are on even more so because the law states that there should be a light on the dash, just like high beams to warn the driver.

Out of interest for the past 2 weeks I have been driving my wife to work at the airport at around 4:30am and I would say that probably 10-20% of all vehicles at that hour are running around with them on for no good reason. Maybe the drivers think they look cool.

Innovation 11:31 am 13 Mar 11

As an “idiot”, I hate them on too but regularly find mine are on because the switch is very easy to bump. Obviously a design flaw in the car. I have checked though and both of my headlights are working so at least I am not the cause of your near miss.

Signed A Clown

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