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New use for car hazard lights

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I've had to do a lot more driving in the last month or so - and I've become aware of a new trend (well new to me anyway).

Round here, driving a 60 km round trip there have been several road works.   Controlled by lights with plenty of warning.   I have noticed when approaching such roadworks, the driver of the car ahead of me will put on the car's rear hazard warning lights.   I was bit intrigued the first time I saw this;  today, stopping at 3 roadworks - similarly, the car in front of me put on their hazard lights as they came to a stop.

Thinking about it - I can see it is indeed an extra warning to following traffic that there is a reason to slow down, or to stop.

But it's a new one on me; never really noticed this before - anyone else noticed it.   And it's catching - be warned;  I found myself at the last set of lights before turning off into tiny rural road - I found I was also putting on my hazard warning lights because I could see in my rear view mirror a rather large lorry approaching me from the rear.

There's always something new isn't there !!


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Slightly irrational I suppose but I find it irritating when people use their hazard warning lights in a way I think is unnecessary. Why put on hazard warning lights at a road works set of traffic lights but not at a normal set of traffic lights? It's daft! I suppose if people were to start jumping out of their cars and doing a jig every time they stopped there would be people copying and doing the same thing!!!

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Happens round my way as well. Normal lights are higher and tend to have good line of site. I tend to judge the situation by how easy it is to see the obstruction from afar and the general speed of the road. I also keep my foot on the brake at normal lights until the car behind has stopped. Haven't been rear ended but did once have a car once overtake the line of traffic thinking we all were parked.

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I've just glanced at the code de la route. Vehicles are required to show hazards when their speed is 'strongly reduced'. When part of a queue only the last vehicle is required to show hazards. There is also an overarching ruling that hazards should be used to alert of an obstruction whether the vehicle itself or something else. Failure to do so can invoke a fine. So I suspect most people are leaning to the side of caution. If you end up rear ended you want to make sure there's no way you can partly be blamed.

Code de la route Articles R416-18/19

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