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I have a white front-facing light and a red light at the back. However, I was wondering if I could add the blue light at the front as well from a legal standpoint. Whether it is flashing or constant doesn't matter to me, I was just wondering if it was okay to have another type of colour at the front to get noticed, and this is the only other colour I have available.

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    I believe Yellow/Amber is permitted as a marker light in any direction. – Criggie Apr 8 at 19:44
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    I recently found "research" about why bicycles are not well visible. It is an advertisement or something about a bike light that also lights the area under the bike. Like car lights also light good part of the asphalt. So IMHO you can buy very cheap white lights and direct them downwards. Might be better than adding more front lights. – akostadinov Apr 9 at 5:49
  • Thank god I don't show or illuminate such lights. – Mr_Green Apr 9 at 8:37
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Regulation 16 of the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations (1989) states:

Restrictions on fitting blue warning beacons, special warning lamps and similar devices

  1. No vehicle, other than an emergency vehicle, shall be fitted with–

    (a) a blue warning beacon or special warning lamp, or

    (b) a device which resembles a blue warning beacon or a special warning lamp, whether the same is in working order or not.

The Regulations have been updated multiple times since 1989, but Regulation 16 has not changed.

A warning beacon is defined by the Regulation to be "A lamp that is capable of emitting a flashing or rotating beam of light throughout 360° in the horizontal plane" and a special warning lamp is "A lamp, fitted to the front or rear of a vehicle, capable of emitting a blue flashing light and not any other kind of light". A blue flashing lamp would surely "resemble... a special warning lamp"; it's unclear whether a solid blue lamp does, but please just don't. Blue lights on emergency vehicles are useful mostly because blue uniquely means "emergency vehicle." People who see a blue light will be distracted trying to figure out if it is an emergency vehicle.

Stick to white lights on the front and red ones on the back. Note that the human eye is not very sensitive to blue (only about 20% as sensitive as to red and green), so blue is a poor choice anyway. See also Should unconventional colors be avoided for lighting?

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    And before anyone thinks you won't confuse a bike with a fire engine, note that bicycle paramedics have blue flashing lights on their bikes. +1. (BTW I'm not sure whether bike count as vehicles for that particular regulation - I am sure that it doesn't matter when considering whether it's a good idea) – Chris H Apr 8 at 18:07
  • Most of the Commonwealth countries share a similar set of rules. Certainly this matches with NZ and AU restrictions. – Criggie Apr 8 at 19:43
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    @ChrisH Bicycles count as vehicles in the general context of the Road Vehicle Lighting Regulations, if that's what you're asking. For example, Regulation 11(1) begins "No vehicle shall..." but 11(1)(c) excepts pedal cycles. – David Richerby Apr 8 at 20:13
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    The same regulation defines warning beacon as "A lamp that is capable of emitting a flashing or rotating beam of light throughout 360° in the horizontal plane" and special warning lamp as "A lamp, fitted to the front or rear of a vehicle, capable of emitting a blue flashing light and not any other kind of light". – wooooooooosh Apr 9 at 1:29
  • @wooooooooosh Thanks! Edited. I had noticed the list of definitions when responding to ChrisH's comment but I was so focused on checking whether a bicycle is a vehicle (it is, but the definitions don't say so) that I didn't think to look for the terms relating to blue lights. – David Richerby Apr 9 at 7:54
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I will speak from a personal experience. Once I had green neon lights installed under my car, they were turned on. Police stopped and told me this;

"You cannot install any kind of lights on your vehicles at any time, working or not, that would give an impression of police, ambulance, fire-brigade or doctor."

I didnt know so they let me go with a strict warning.

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    Which of those uses a green light under the vehicle? – pipe Apr 9 at 12:15
  • @pipe Emergency doctors use green lights on the vehicle. I suspect you'd be able to challenge this with under-car lighting, but I don't have too many objections to the police inventing the not-quite-a-crime of "loitering with really crappy taste". :) More seriously, they can pull you on grounds of road safety if the lights are likely to be a distraction to other road users. – Graham Apr 9 at 12:44
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    In the UK, doctors may use green flashing lights on their vehicles when attending to an emergency. – justinpc Apr 9 at 12:44
  • @Graham Thanks. In Sweden they all use blue or possibly red lights, as far as I know. – pipe Apr 9 at 13:40

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