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How decorating your car for holidays could get you into trouble

The Washington State Patrol isn’t trying to be a Grinch by busting drivers who’ve decorated their cars for Christmas, but said there are a few things that just aren’t safe on the road.

State Trooper Mark Francis told KIRO Radio they had to pull over a couple on Highway 9 in Lake Stevens over the weekend that had an elaborate setup, complete with a garland looping around the car windshield, flashing-colored lights, and a big wreath hung right over the license plate.

They were let go with a warning, but with the stipulation they’d remove the decorations.

“You can’t have any white lights emitting to the rear of your car,” Trooper Francis said. “That being said, you can’t have any red lights on the front of the car. Their car had red lights on it, but then it also had blue lights. Only cops can have blue lights.”

He said it’s a matter of safety for other drivers.

“Whenever you’re seeing red, you know that it’s a car going away from you. If you see something white, you’re thinking, oh is this a car coming at me? Because usually throughout the nation, we’ve got white lights, amber lights in the front, red lights in the back.”

White lights are fair game, as long as they don’t flash and can’t be seen from the back. Green lights are out because they’re reserved for firefighters.

For drivers who love the antler window attachments, Trooper Francis said those are fine as long as they’re securely attached.

As for state troopers, Francis said he wishes he could make his patrol car more festive, but out of professional concern, the flashiest they ever get is with antenna ornaments.

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