'Blue Light Bill' Awaits Gov. Bevin's Signature

The final days of this year's General Assembly session on the minds of lawmakers.

Among the bills awaiting Governor Bevin's signature: the 'Blue Light Bill', regulating headlights on cars. A house version was approved by both chambers.

State Senator Dorsey Ridley says the House version has many similarities to his version introduced last month. But some have questions over how the bill could be enforced.

"It's all about making sure we have standard highway headlights for automobiles," says State Sen. Ridley.

Under the House bill: any light omitting a color other than white is prohibited, along with any film or covering that changes it color. It also must meet U.S. Department Of Transportation regulations. The version introduced by State Sen. Ridley was also approved by the senate but didn't reach a full house vote. Kentucky State Police say the lights can cause safety and other problems.

"It can be very problematic," says Trooper Sean Wint of KSP. "Cars wth blue lights that aren't law enforcement develop distrust whenever someone gets pulled over by another motorist that isn't law enforcement, and then when law enforcement does try to pull them over, sometimes these drivers are hesitant to stop."

"Some of these colors are so strange they pull off the side of the road, because they think it's an emergency vehicle coming from behind," Ridley says.

Don Higdon of Autovizion sells hundreds of colored headlight bulbs a year. He understands the general safety concerns, but wonders how easy it will be to enforce the law, adding enforcement could depend on what an officer determines is "too blue".

"It's going to be difficult to say, 'O.K. were these in this vehicle before this law was passed? Did this vehicle come with this lights because some of the new cars have a blue light from the factory,'" Higdon says.

Troopers say they'll need to know what the final wording of the bill is before determining how it can be enforced.


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