As detailed in previous articles on this platform, visibility is critical for a motorcyclist's safety. By visibility, it applies to both being able to see things and also being able to be seen on the road. Elaborating on the latter, let's look at one accessory that's becoming quite the rage on Indian roads: Aftermarket hazard flashers.
So, what are aftermarket hazard flashers? They are circuit boxes which sit in between the motorcycle's wiring for the turn indicator. Their function is to flash all four turn indicators at once, and in multiple patterns.
Most newly minted motorcyclists, and even many veterans use this accessory to make themselves seen on the road. While there's no doubt that aftermarket hazard flashers - when in use - make the biker more visible to other traffic thanks to the constantly blinking turn indicators, there are three major downsides.
1. All four indicators flashing at once indicate that the vehicle is stationary. Using such flashers when the motorcycle is moving is illegal, and in fact, a couple of State Governments have even said so explicitly.
2. Secondly, it's confusing for other road users, who may mistakenly think that the vehicle that has its hazard lamps on as being stationary. Confusion is dangerous on the road.
3. Adding any electrical accessory to the motorcycle may void warranty across most established brands, with or without wire splicing.
Considering the multiple downsides associated with aftermarket hazard flashers, this is an accessory that is best avoided. There are many other ways to stay visible to other traffic. A couple of them are 1. Wearing bright and highly reflective riding gear 2. Ensuring that the headlamp is on, which automatically will turn the tail lamp on.
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