Five Things You Should Know About Emergency Vehicle Lights

Having a light bar on an emergency vehicle separates their vehicle from all the other vehicles on the road. It also alerts other non-emergency drivers that they’re in a hurry due to an emergency and it signals other drivers to move off to the side of the road so they can get through. In addition, with a light bar on an emergency vehicle, emergency drivers can turn on the light and warn other drivers of dangerous conditions such as an accident or natural disaster. In other words, without emergency vehicle lights, it’d make it very hard for emergency service personnel to do their jobs effectively and safely. As important as emergency lights are, many people don’t know the first thing about the light bars that go on them. Check out these five important things everyone should know.

Size Matters

Having the proper size lights on an emergency vehicle ensures optimum visibility to other drivers. The size of the light bar on a vehicle depends mainly on the size of the vehicle itself. How much roof space, mounting options, and vehicle type will help determine the size of the light bar they’ll need. For example, a full-sized light bar is an ideal choice for large vehicles, while a mini light bar is perfect for a motorcycle or UTV.

Types of Lighting

When it comes to choosing a light bar for an emergency vehicle, it’s important to know the different options available. For starters, a full-sized light bar goes on top of an emergency vehicle spanning across the roof from one side to the other. This particular light bar mounts on the exterior only and makes a suitable option for large or oversized vehicles. For smaller vehicles, motorcycles, and ATVs, the mini light bar makes a versatile option. Service personnel can mount this light bar anywhere on the vehicle, even if there’s a limited amount of space. Furthermore, another popular option is the beacon. This is a round, dome-shaped light that mounts to the roof or hood of a vehicle.

Why LED is The Ideal Choice

Of all the different types of lighting, a person can choose for their emergency vehicle, LED lights are the preferred choice. The main reason LED lights are the most popular focuses on visibility. Unlike other emergency vehicle lights, other drivers, construction workers, and anyone else in the nearby vicinity can see a vehicle’s LED lights from a further distance. This extra visibility gives other people time to get out of the drivers’ way or slow down in an emergency situation and prevent other unfortunate accidents from occurring due to lack of visibility. In addition, LED lights offer a longer-lasting lifespan when compared to other forms of lighting. In fact, LED lights have a lifespan of over 50,000-hours, nearly three times that of other light options.


Most commonly, people are familiar with the standard red and blue lights seen on most police and emergency vehicles. However, there’s a variety of colors available for emergency vehicle lights. In addition, they also have emergency lights that offer dozens of different flash patterns which help the drivers signal to nearby patrons what type of emergency situation is occurring.

Power Sources

Each type of lighting offers its own installation and setup process that varies depending on the type of lights chosen. Some lights need users to hardwire them into the existing electrical system inside the vehicle, while others run solely off batteries with no wiring required. In addition, some lights, like beacon lights, get their power from the cigarette lighter mounted inside of the vehicle.