2018 New Mexico Statutes
Chapter 66 - Motor Vehicles
Article 3 - Registration Laws; Security Interests; Anti-Theft Provisions; Bicycles; Equipment; Unsafe Vehicles; Off-Highway Motor Vehicles; Other Vehicles
Section 66-3-835 - Special restrictions on lamps.

Universal Citation: NM Stat § 66-3-835 (2018)
66-3-835. Special restrictions on lamps.

A. Lighted lamps or illuminating devices upon a motor vehicle, other than headlamps, spot lamps, auxiliary lamps, flashing turn signals, emergency vehicle warning lamps and school bus warning lamps, that project a beam of light of an intensity greater than three hundred candle power shall be directed so that no part of the high-intensity portion of the beam strikes the level of the roadway on which the vehicle stands at a distance of more than seventy-five feet from the vehicle.

B. A person shall not drive or move upon a highway a vehicle or equipment with a lamp or device displaying a red light visible from directly in front of the center of the vehicle or equipment, except as expressly authorized or required by the Motor Vehicle Code.

C. Flashing lights are prohibited except as provided in this section and except on authorized emergency vehicles, school buses, snow-removal equipment and highway-marking equipment. Except as otherwise provided in this section, flashing red lights may be used as warning lights on disabled or parked vehicles and on any vehicle as a means of indicating a turn.

D. A recovery or repair vehicle standing on a highway for the purpose of removing, and actually engaged in removing, a disabled vehicle and while engaged in towing a disabled vehicle may display flashing lights in any color except red. This provision shall not be construed as permitting the use of flashing lights by recovery or repair vehicles in going to or returning from the location of disabled vehicles unless actually engaged in towing a disabled vehicle.

E. Only fire department vehicles, law enforcement agency vehicles, ambulances and school buses may display flashing red lights visible from the front of the vehicle. All other vehicles authorized by the Motor Vehicle Code to display flashing lights visible from the front of the vehicle may use any other color of light that is visible.

History: 1953 Comp., § 64-3-835, enacted by Laws 1978, ch. 35, § 141; 2017, ch. 75, § 1.


Cross references. — For authorized emergency vehicles, see 66-7-6 NMSA 1978.

The 2017 amendment, effective June 16, 2017, restricted the use of red flashing lights by certain motor vehicles; in Subsection B, deleted "No" and added "A", after "shall", added "not", after "move upon", deleted "any" and added "a", after "highway", deleted "any" and added "a", after "vehicle or equipment,", deleted "This section does not apply to any vehicle upon which a red light visible from the front is" and added "except as"; in Subsection C, after "as provided in", deleted "Subsection D of", and added "Except as otherwise provided in this section"; in Subsection D, deleted "Tow cars" and added "A recovery or repair vehicle", after "standing on", deleted "highways" and added "a highway", after "engaged in removing", added "a", after "disabled", deleted "vehicles" and added "vehicle", after "engaged in towing", deleted "any" and added "a", after "display flashing lights", added "in any color except red", after "This", added "provision", and after "use of flashing lights by", deleted "tow cars" and added "recovery or repair vehicles"; and in Subsection E, after "school buses", deleted "shall" and added "may".

Front mounted red lights permitted on volunteer fire department member's vehicles. — Privately owned vehicles, used by members of a volunteer fire department in carrying out their duties in connection with such a fire department, may properly be defined as "fire department vehicles," and as such are authorized to have flashing red lights on the front as provided for by Section 64-20-36E, 1953 Comp. (similar to this section). 1969 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 69-71.

Corporation commission (now public regulation commission) inspector's automobile cannot have flashing lights. — In the absence of a designation of the vehicle as an authorized emergency vehicle in compliance with Section 64-15-5, 1953 Comp. (similar to Section 66-7-6 NMSA 1978), the automobile utilized by any corporation commission (now public regulation commission) inspector may not have sirens and flashing lights installed thereon. 1961-62 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 61-40.

Am. Jur. 2d, A.L.R. and C.J.S. references. — 60A C.J.S. Motor Vehicles § 340.

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