Plow lights, explained


From: Sgt. Troy Christianson
Minnesota State Patrol

Question: I have a question regarding the auxiliary headlights on a truck with a plow. Are they a requirement? I purchased a plow for my truck recently and the lights that came with are not nearly as bright as the stock lights on my truck. My stock headlights actually work perfectly fine over the top of the plow without any glare back at me. Are the auxiliary headlights I always see on plow trucks actually something that are required to be there or can I take them off since my stock truck lights work better?

Answer: Most pickup plow trucks that I see on the road have lights that are attached to the plow and are used instead of the original headlights.

You can remove headlights on a plow if they do not obstruct or interfere with your stock headlights. When using snowplow headlights, they must be aimed in a manner not blinding to other drivers.

As far as snow plow vehicles with roof-mounted flashing amber lights, Minnesota law says that any service vehicle may be equipped with a flashing amber lamp approved by the commissioner of public safety.

The law also states that service vehicles shall not display a lighted flashing amber lamp when traveling or at any other time except at the scene of a disabled vehicle or while engaged in snow removal or road maintenance. It is important for snow-removal companies displaying amber flashing lights to turn them off when traveling on the roadway to help motorists distinguish between emergency vehicles and service vehicles.

Remember that other traffic on the main roadway will have the right of way, so be sure to pay attention and use due care when plowing snow.

If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota send your questions to Sgt. Troy Christianson, Minnesota State Patrol, 2900 48th Street NW, Rochester, Minn., 55901-5848; or reach him at


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