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View Diary: Flashing Headlights to Warn of Speed Traps Is Protected Speech (132 comments)

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  •  If we couldn't flash our lights, there would be (10+ / 0-)

    more roadkill in my area. I drive twisting mountain roads in the middle of nowhere. If a car coming around a curve flashes its lights, I do not automatically think "cop." I think "deer." Or it could be a bear or wild turkey - or bicyclist - you get the idea.

    Most of the time I do not drive fast enough to worry about speed traps. But I do flash my lights at on-coming cars when I see a cop hidden away shooting radar. I do not believe they need to use radar and issue tickets to get people to slow down. Small towns use radar to increase revenue. All they really have to do to slow traffic is park a cruiser at the side of the road - heck you can use a dummy!

    http://news.google.com/...

    "May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house." - George Carlin

    by Most Awesome Nana on Fri Feb 07, 2014 at 12:46:18 PM PST

    •  Was waiting for someone to say that. (7+ / 0-)

      Flashing light could mean speed trap, deer, moose, branch in road.

      I read it as a general caution.

      Also, on the highway it can communicate to a vehicle with the turn signal blinking that they're clear to change lanes. Try it with truckers, they understand it.

      "You don't have to be smart to laugh at fart jokes, but you have to be stupid not to." - Louis CK

      by New Jersey Boy on Fri Feb 07, 2014 at 06:10:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  lots of reasons to flash in the country (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bluefin, Most Awesome Nana

        I live iwhere there are lots of blind spots in the road.  I'll flash to let people know there's something in the road, sometimes even a stalled car or accident or emergency vehicle ahead.  Often it's injured wildlife, or maybe a cow that's out.

      •  agreed (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Most Awesome Nana

        I was thinking I saw it used mostly to warn of road hazzard  - one time in the middle of the night someone had lost a sofa in the middle of the interstate - we were sure appreciating the warning from the other drivers.

      •  Not as much as they use to... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        New Jersey Boy, janmtairy, kurt, Puddytat
        Try it with truckers, they understand it.
        When I started driving (right after headlights were invented ;-) ), we learned the language to make it easier/safer to be on the same roads. But I think in the last 20 years, the practice has died out. I see very few car drivers doing anything more than angrily flashing lights when they aren't being allowed to go fast enough. And they cut back in front of trucks way too soon - often making me cringe and I'm not even in the truck.

        Maybe the truckers are fed up with us, but I don't see them using their lights very often - except to other truckers. I still signal when it is okay for a truck to pull back in front of me, but I rarely get a thank you flash. And most of the time truckers do not signal when it is okay for me to pull back.  

        "May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house." - George Carlin

        by Most Awesome Nana on Sat Feb 08, 2014 at 07:11:54 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I flash to let someone in and warn (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Most Awesome Nana

          about speed traps, but the practice, in general, is dying off.

          There already is class warfare in America. Unfortunately, the rich are winning.

          by Puddytat on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 01:26:49 AM PST

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        •  Truckers usually flash their running lights rather (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Most Awesome Nana

          than the headlights.  Flashing high beams can temporarily "blind" a driver, whether its from in front or from behind.

          Not having running lights on my car, I try to remember this and signal trucks by briefly turning my headlights off and back on.  Of course, that involves turning a knob which is harder to do than flicking the stalk.

          We must drive the special interests out of politics.… There can be no effective control of corporations while their political activity remains. To put an end to it will neither be a short not an easy task, but it can be done. -- Teddy Roosevelt

          by NoMoJoe on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 07:32:38 AM PST

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          •  You are right. Truckers headlights would be (0+ / 0-)

            blinding. I don't think car headlights (except for those horrendous blue things) are all that bright - at least not for a short flash.

            I turn my lights on and off as a thank you. But I still flash the high beams as a warning.

            "May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house." - George Carlin

            by Most Awesome Nana on Sun Feb 09, 2014 at 08:04:57 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

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