Chapter 4501-15 Motor Vehicles-Lighting

4501-15-01 Headlights.

(A) Aim of headlights - Headlights shall be aimed in accordance with the society of automotive engineers (hereinafter referred to as S.A.E.) lighting specifications code and shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate specification set forth in the SA.E. recommended practices or S.A.E. standards for electric headlamps for motor vehicles or sealed-beam headlamp units for motor vehicles and for motorcycles and motor-driven cycles the headlights shall conform to the appropriate specifications set forth in the S.A.E. standards for motorcycle and motor-driven cycle headlamps.

(B) Height - Every headlamp upon every vehicle, including every motorcycle and motor-driven cycle, shall be located at a height measured from the center of the headlamp of not more than fifty-four inches nor less than twenty-four inches to be measured as set forth in section 4513.03 of the Revised Code.

(C) Multiple-beam road-lighting equipment - Except as hereinafter provided, the headlamps or the auxiliary driving lamp or the auxiliary passing lamp or combination thereof on motor vehicles other than motorcycles or motor-driven cycles shall be so arranged that the driver may select at will between distributions of light projected to different elevations and such lamps may, in addition, be so arranged that such selection can be made automatically, subject to the following limitations:

(1) There shall be an uppermost distribution of light, or composite beam, so aimed and of such intensity as to reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least three hundred fifty feet ahead for all conditions of loading.

(2) There shall be a lowermost distribution of light, or composite beam, so aimed and of sufficient intensity to reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least one hundred feet ahead; and on a straight level road under any condition of loading none of the high-intensity portion of the beam shall be directed to strike the eyes of an approaching driver.

(D) Single-beam road-lighting equipment - Headlamp systems which provide only a single distribution of light shall be permitted on motor vehicles manufactured and sold prior to 1960 in lieu of multiple-beam road-lighting equipment herein specified if the single distribution of light complies with the following requirements and limitations:

(1) The headlamps shall be so aimed that when the vehicle is not loaded none of the high-intensity portion of the light shall at a distance of twenty-five feet ahead project higher than a level of five inches below the level of the center of the lamp from which it comes, and in no case higher than forty-two inches above the level on which the vehicle stands at a distance of seventy-five feet ahead.

(2) The intensity shall be sufficient to reveal persons and vehicles at a distance of at least two hundred feet.

(E) Lighting equipment on motor-driven cycles - The headlamp or headlamps upon every motor-driven cycle may be of the single-beam or multiple-beam type but in either event shall comply with the requirements and limitations as follows:

(1) Every said headlamp or headlamps on a motor-driven cycle shall be of sufficient intensity to reveal a person or a vehicle at a distance of not less than one hundred feet when the motor-driven cycle is operated at any speed less than twenty-five miles per hour and at a distance of not less than two hundred feet when the motor-driven cycle is operated at a speed of twenty-five or more miles per hour, and at a distance of not less than three hundred feet when the motor-driven cycle is operated at a speed of thirty-five or more miles per hour.

(2) In the event the motor-driven cycle is equipped with a multiple-beam headlamp or headlamps, the upper beam shall meet the minimum requirements set forth above and shall not exceed the limitations set forth in paragraph (C)(1) of this rule and the lowermost beam shall meet the requirements applicable to a lowermost distribution of light as set forth in paragraph (C)(2) of this rule.

(3) In the event the motor-driven cycle is equipped with a single-beam lamp or lamps, said lamp or lamps shall be so aimed that when the vehicle is loaded none of the high-intensity portion of light, at a distance of twenty-five feet ahead, shall project higher than the level of the center of the lamp from which it comes.

(F) The headlamps required by the motor vehicle laws of Ohio and this chapter shall be electrically lighted and display a white light.

(1) The light from a spot lamp shall be white.

(2) The light from a supplementary driving or passing lamp shall be white.

(3) The light from an adverse weather lamp shall be white, yellow, or light amber.

(4) Adverse weather lamps shall be so wired that, whenever they are turned on, the tail lamp will also be lighted.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 6/1/00, 7/23/01, 7/25/2004

4501-15-02 Taillights, registration lights and stop lights.

(A) Taillights and license plate lights shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate S.A.E. standards for taillights and license plate lights.

(B) Every motor vehicle, motorcycles and motor-driven cycles, shall have at least one tail lamp. On a combination of vehicles, only the tail lamps on the rearmost vehicle need actually be seen from the distance specified. On vehicles equipped with more than one tail lamp, the lamps shall be mounted on the same level and as widely spaced laterally as practicable.

Every tail lamp upon every vehicle shall be located at a height of not more than seventy-two inches nor less than fifteen inches.

(C) When stop lights are used as authorized by section 4511.39 of the Revised Code, they shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate S.A.E. standards for stop lamps.

(1) After January 1, 1967, every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer and pole trailer shall be equipped with two or more stop lamps, except that passenger cars manufactured or assembled prior to January 1, 1967, and motorcycles and motor-driven cycles shall be equipped with at least one stop lamp. On a combination of vehicles, only the stop lamps on the rearmost vehicle need actually be seen from the distance specified in this rule.

(2) Any vehicle may be equipped and when required under this rule shall be equipped with a stop lamp or lamps on the rear of the vehicle which shall display a red light, visible from a distance of not less than three hundred feet to the rear in normal sunlight, and which shall be actuated upon application of the service (foot) brake, and which may but need not be incorporated with one or more other rear lamps.

(3) Every stop light shall be located at a height of not more than seventy-two inches nor less than fifteen inches.

(4) If a high mounted stop lamp is installed it shall be located at a minimum height of thirty-four inches in height.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01, 8/11/05

4501-15-03 Reflectors.

Reflectors shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate S.A.E. standards for reflex reflectors.

(A) Every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer and pole trailer shall carry on the rear, either as a part of the tail lamps or separately, two or more red reflectors meeting the requirements of this rule, except that motorcycles and motor-driven cycles shall carry at least one such reflector.

(B) Every such reflector shall be mounted on the vehicle at a height not less than fifteen inches nor more than sixty inches measured as set forth in section 4513.03 of the Revised Code, and shall be of such size and characteristic and so mounted as to be visible at night from all distances within three hundred feet to fifty feet from such vehicle when directly in front of lawful upper beams of headlamps.

(C) Every multi-wheeled agricultural tractor whose model year was 2001 or earlier, when being operated or traveling on a street or highway at times specified in section 4513.03 of the Revised Code at a minimum shall be equipped, on the extreme left and right projection of the tractor, with amber reflectors visible to the front and red reflectors visible from the rear. The placement of these reflectors shall correlate with and, to the extent not inconsistent with section 4513.111 of the Revised Code, conform with paragraphs 4.1. 4.1, 4.1. 8.1 and 4.1. 8.2 of the American society of agricultural engineers standard ANSI/ASAE S 279.14 JUL08. lighting and marking of agricultural equipment on highways. These reflectors are in addition to the slow-moving vehicle emblem required by section 4513.11 of the Revised Code.

(D) Every unit of farm machinery whose model year was 2002 or later, when being operated or traveling on a street or highway at times specified in section 4513.03 of the Revised Code shall be equipped with reflectors that meet or exceed the standards that are applicable to that type of farm machinery for the unit's model year specified in the American society of agricultural engineers standard ANSI/ASAE S 279.14 JUL08. lighting and marking of agricultural equipment on highways.

Effective: 05/27/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.11 , R.C. 4513.19, R.C. 4513.111
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.11 , R.C. 4513.19, R.C. 4513.111
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01, 8/11/05

4501-15-04 Clearance lamps, marker lamps, stop lamps, back-up lamps, turn signals, license plate illuminating light, identification lamps and reflectors on vehicles.

(A) Clearance lamps, marker lamps, stop lamps, and reflectors on commercial motor vehicles shall be constructed to conform to appropriate requirements of the S.A.E. standard for clearance, side-marker, identification and parking lamps, or the S.A.E. standard for stop lamps, or the S.A.E. standard for reflex reflectors and shall be installed at locations on the vehicle in accordance with the current federal motor carrier safety regulations.

(B) In addition to the other equipment required in sections 4513.04 to 4513.18 of the Revised Code, the following vehicles shall be equipped as herein stated under the conditions stated in section 4513.07 of the Revised Code, and in addition, the reflectors elsewhere enumerated for such vehicles shall conform to the requirements of section 4513.06 of the Revised Code.

(1) Buses, trucks and motor homes eighty inches or more in overall width:

(a) On the front, two clearance lamps, one at each side, and on vehicles manufactured or assembled after January 1, 1967, three identification lamps meeting the specifications of subdivision (1) of S.A.E. standard for clearance, side-marker, identification, and parking lamps.

(b) On the rear, two clearance lamps, one at each side, and after January 1, 1967, three identification lamps meeting the specifications of subdivision (1) of S.A.E. standard for clearance, side-marker, identification, and parking lamps.

(c) On each side, two side marker lamps, one at or near the front and one at or near the rear.

(d) On each side, two reflectors, one at or near the front and one at or near the rear.

(2) Trailers, semitrailers, fifth-wheel trailers and travel trailers eighty inches or more in overall width:

(a) On the front, two clearance lamps, one at each side.

(b) On the rear, two clearance lamps, one at each side.

(c) On each side, two side marker lamps, one at or near the front and one at or near the rear.

(d) On each side, two reflectors, one at or near the front and one at or near the rear.

(e) After January 1, 1967, on the rear, three identification lamps.

(3) Commercial tractors:

On the front, two cab clearance lamps, one at each side, and on vehicles manufactured or assembled after January 1, 1967, three identification lamps meeting the specifications of subdivision (1) S.A.E. standard for clearance, side-marker, identification, and parking lamps.

(4) Trailers, semitrailers, pole trailers, fifth-wheel trailers, travel trailers, trucks, buses, and motor homes thirty feet or more in overall length:

On each side, one amber side marker lamp and one amber reflector, centrally located with respect to the length of the vehicle.

(5) Pole trailers:

(a) On each side, one amber side marker lamp at or near the front of the load.

(b) On each side, one amber reflector at or near the front of the load.

(c) On the rearmost support for the load, one combination marker lamp showing amber to the front and red to the rear and side, mounted to indicate maximum width of the pole trailer.

(6) Combination driveaway-towaway operation:

(a) On the front, two cab clearance lamps, one on each side.

(b) On each side and near the front, one side marker lamp.

(c) On each saddle mounted vehicle, on each side and near the rear, one side marker lamp.

(d) On rearmost vehicle, two clearance lamps and two reflectors, one at each side.

(e) Marker lamps and clearance lamps may be temporarily mounted on motor vehicles during the time they are in transit in any driveaway operation but in any case, must be firmly attached to the motor vehicles.

(C) Multi-wheeled agricultural tractors, units of farm machinery:

(1) Every multi-wheeled agricultural tractor whose model year was 2001 or earlier, when being operated or traveling on a street or highway at times specified in section 4513.03 of the Revised Code at a minimum shall be equipped, on the extreme left and right projection of the tractor, with amber flashing lamps visible to the front and rear of the tractor, and visible from a distance of five hundred feet. The placement of these lamps shall correlate with and, to the extent not inconsistent with section 4513.111 of the Revised Code, conform with paragraphs 4.1. 4.1, 4.1. 8.1 and 4.1. 8.2 of the American society of agricultural engineers standard ANSI/ASAE S 279.14 JUL08. lighting and marking of agricultural equipment on highways. These lamps are in addition to the slow-moving vehicle lamps permitted by sections 4513.11 and 4513.17 of the Revised Code.

(2) Every unit of farm machinery whose model year was 2002 or later, when being operated or traveling on a street or highway at times specified in section 4513.03 of the Revised Code shall be equipped with illuminated lamps that meet or exceed the standards that are applicable to that type of farm machinery for the unit's model year specified in the American society of agricultural engineers standard ANSI/ASAE S 279.14 JUL08. lighting and marking of agricultural equipment on highways.

(D) Whenever required or permitted by this chapter, identification lamps shall be grouped in a horizontal row, with lamp centers spaced not less than six nor more than twelve inches apart, and mounted on the permanent structure of the vehicle as close as practicable to the vertical centerline; provided, however, that where the cab of a vehicle is not more than forty-two inches wide at the front roof line, a single identification lamp at the center of the cab shall be deemed to comply with the requirements for front identification lamps.

(E) Color of clearance lamps, identification lamps, side marker lamps, back-up lamps, stop lamps, turn signals, license plate illuminating light, and reflectors:

(1) Front clearance lamps, identification lamps, and those marker lamps, and reflectors mounted on the front or on the side near the front of a vehicle shall display or reflect amber color.

(2) Rear clearance lamps, identification lamps, and those marker lamps and reflectors mounted on the rear or on the sides near the rear of a vehicle shall display or reflect red color.

(3) The stop lamps shall be red in color. The turn signals facing to the rear shall be red or amber. The turn signals facing to the front shall be amber. The light illuminating the license plate shall be white. The light emitted by a back-up lamp shall be white.

(F) Mounting of reflectors, clearance lamps and side marker lamps:

(1) Reflectors when required by section 4513.07 of the Revised Code shall be mounted at a height not less than twenty-four inches and not higher than sixty inches above the ground on which the vehicle stands, except that if the highest part of the permanent structure of the vehicle is less than twenty-four inches the reflector at such point shall be mounted as high as that part of the permanent structure will permit.

The rear reflectors on a pole trailer may be mounted on each side of the bolster or load.

Any required red reflector on the rear of a vehicle may be incorporated with the tail lamp, but such reflector shall meet all the other reflector requirements of this chapter.

(2) Clearance lamps shall be mounted on the permanent structure of the vehicle in such a manner as to indicate its extreme width and as near the top thereof as practicable. Clearance lamps and side marker lamps may be mounted in combination provided illumination is given as required herein with reference to both.

(G) Visibility requirements for reflectors, clearance lamps, identification lamps and marker lamps:

(1) Every reflector upon any vehicle referred to in section 4513.07 of the Revised Code shall be of such size and characteristics and so maintained as to be readily visible at night-time from all distances within six hundred feet to one hundred feet from the vehicle shall reflect the required color of light to the sides, and those mounted on the rear shall reflect a red color to the rear.

(2) Front and rear clearance lamps and identification lamps shall be capable of being seen and distinguished under normal atmospheric conditions at the times lights are required at all distances between five hundred and fifty feet from the front and rear, respectively, of the vehicle.

(3) Side marker lamps shall be capable of being seen and distinguished under normal atmospheric conditions at the times lights are required at all distances between five hundred and fifty feet from the side of the vehicle on which mounted.

Effective: 05/27/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19, R.C. 4513.111 , R.C. 4513.07
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19, R.C. 4513.111 , R.C. 4513.07
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 6/1/00, 7/23/01, 7/25/04

4501-15-05 Parking lights.

Parking lights shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate requirements of the S.A.E. Standard for Clearance Side-Marker, Identification and Parking Lamps.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 6/1/00, 7/23/01

4501-15-06 Spot lights and auxiliary driving lights.

Spot lights and auxiliary driving lights shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate S.A.E. Standards for Spot Lamps, Front Fog Lamps, Auxiliary Driving Lamps.

(A) Fog lamps -- Any motor vehicle may be equipped with a maximum of two fog lamps mounted on the front at a height not less than twelve inches nor more than thirty inches above the level surface upon which the vehicle stands and so aimed that when the vehicle is loaded none of the high-intensity portion of the light to the left of the center of the vehicle shall at a distance of twenty-five feet ahead project higher than a level of four inches below the level of the center of the lamp from which it comes. Lighted fog lamps meeting the above requirements may be used with lower headlamp beams as specified in paragraph (C)(2) of rule 4501-15-01 of the Administrative Code.

(B) Auxiliary low-beam lamp -- Any motor vehicle may be equipped with a maximum of one auxiliary passing lamp mounted on the front at a height not less than sixteen inches nor more than forty-two inches above the level surface upon which the vehicle stands. The provisions of section 4513.17 of the Revised Code shall apply to any combination of headlamps and auxiliary passing lamps.

(C) Auxiliary driving lamps -- Any motor vehicle may be equipped with a maximum two auxiliary driving lamps mounted on the front at a height not less than sixteen inches nor more than forty-two inches above the level surface upon which the vehicle stands. The provisions of section 4513.17 of the Revised Code shall apply to any combination of headlamps and auxiliary driving lamps.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01

4501-15-07 Back-up lights, side cowl or fender lights.

Back-up lights shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate S.A.E. Standards for Back-Up Lights.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01

4501-15-08 Flashing lights.

Flashing lights when used on a disabled vehicle and a motor vehicle using the same to warn of a vehicular traffic hazard shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the appropriate S.A.E. Standards for Turn Signal Units.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01

4501-15-09 Accessory lamps.

(A) A vehicle may be equipped with accessory lamps or lights as herein defined, provided that their placement or installation on the vehicle or their use does not interfere with or tend to confuse the use of required lamps or lights, that are subject to provisions in sections 4513.03 to 4513.19 and 4513.261 of the Revised Code and respective rules herein outlined.

(B) These accessory lamps or lights may be used anytime. When used they shall not exceed twenty-one candlepower intensity and shall otherwise be in accord with the current standards for construction and use issued by the Society of Automotive Engineers.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01, 8/11/05

4501-15-10 Directional signals.

(A) Directional signals shall be constructed and installed so as to provide adequate and reliable illumination and shall conform to the S.A.E. standards for turn signal lamps.

(B) Any vehicle may be equipped and when required under section 4511.39 of the Revised Code shall be equipped with electric turn signals which shall indicate an intention to turn by flashing lights showing to the front and rear of a vehicle or on a combination of vehicles, on the side of the vehicle or combination toward which the turn is to be made. The lamps shall be mounted on the same level and as widely spaced laterally as practicable and, when signaling, shall emit white or amber light to the front and red or amber to the rear. Turn signal lamps shall be visible at a distance of not less than three hundred feet in normal sunlight. Turn signal lamps may, but need not be, incorporated in other lamps on the vehicle.

(C) Directional signals on any vehicle shall be located at a height of not more than eighty-three inches nor less than fifteen inches.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01, 8/11/05

4501-15-11 Approval of motor vehicle lights.

Only lights and lamps which meet S.A.E. standards shall be offered for sale, installed or used on motor vehicles operated on Ohio's public roads and highways.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19
Prior Effective Dates: 11/17/66, 10/16/82, 7/23/01, 8/11/05

4501-15-12 Referenced materials.

(A) Whenever reference is made in this chapter to S.A.E. standards or S.A.E. recommended practices, they shall be found in the edition (current at the time of sale of lights) of the "S.A.E. Handbook" published by the "Society of Automotive Engineers," 400 Commonwealth Drive, Warrendale, PA 15096, telephone: 724-776-4841, web site: www.sae.org.

(B) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the versions of all federal regulations and other texts incorporated by reference throughout Chapter 4501-15 of the Administrative Code are those in effect on the effective date of this rule. The following are contact sites for materials incorporated by reference in Chapter 4501-15 of the Administrative Code:

(1) American society of agricultural engineers (ASAE), 2950 Niles Road, St.

Joseph, Missouri 49085, telephone: 269-429-0300, web site: www.asae.org

(2) American national standards institute (ANSI), 1819 L. Street, NW 6th Floor, Washington DC 20056, telephone: 202-293-8020, web site: www.ansi.org

(3) Federal motor carrier safety regulations (FMCSR)

Obtained via: U.S. government printing office, 732 N. Capitol Street NW, Washington DC 20401, telephone: 202-366-2519, web site: www.fmcsa.dot.gov.

R.C. 119.032 review dates: 03/09/2010 and 03/09/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: R.C. 4513.19, R.C. 4513.111 , R.C. 4513.07
Rule Amplifies: R.C. 4513.19, R.C. 4513.111 , R.C. 4513.07
Prior Effective Dates: 7/24/04