Ask a Trooper by Sgt. Jesse Grabow

Question: Can I be stopped by law enforcement if the third brake light on the rear dash goes out and both brake lights still work?

Answer: Yes, you can. Brake lights are very important on any vehicle as they allow other mo- torists know when you slowing and stopping. Under Minnesota law, a vehicle equipped with a third brake light that is not work- ing would be in violation of the statute.

Minnesota statute says that when a vehicle is equipped with stop lamps or signal lamps, such lamps shall at all times be main- tained in good working condition.

For your safety, the safety of your passengers, and the motorists around you, I encourage you to check your brake lights, head lights, and turn signals often.

A portion of state statutes were used with permission from the Of- fice of the Revisor of Statutes. If you have any questions concern- ing traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trp. Jesse Grabow – Minnesota State Patrol at 1000 Highway 10 West, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501- 2205. (You can follow him on Twitter @MSPPIO_NW or reach him at, jesse.grabow@state.mn.us).

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