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State Regulations

The use of certain coloured flashing lights and sirens are restricted by state and territory legislation. Before installing any lights to your vehicle, we recommend you read the relevant regulations for your state. Some states also control how many lights you may have and where they can be installed. For example, in NSW all vehicles must have at least one (1) light affixed to the roof, with only police and RMS traffic commanders exempt from this requirement. 

Amber  & White

Generally, the use of amber and white flashing lights is considered unrestricted. Even so, amber lights should only be operated in hazardous conditions where you need to warn other drivers. Their use does not allow any exemptions from the road rules. 

It is good practice to only flash white light to front or side of the vehicle, as this can easily be confused for flashing headlights which indicate a vehicle approaching you. 

Most regulations, however, list various uses where amber lights may be used. Below are some examples: 

  • Traffic control
  • Construction vehicles
  • Breakdown assistance
  • Tow trucks
  • Utility / service vehicles (garbage trucks, street sweepers, etc)
  • Mobile cranes
  • Heavy vehicle escorts
  • School buses
  • Private security
  • Volunteers
  • Council rangers
  • Street vending


Red lights are reserved for non-government emergency services and some rescue organisations. 

  • Mines rescue
  • Medical escorts
  • Other rescue vehicles


Blue lights are restricted to emergency services only. 

  • Police
  • Ambulance
  • Fire
  • State Emergency Services (SES)
  • Traffic Emergency Patrol / Commander


Magenta is primarily used for heavy vehicle escorts and enforcement. 

Restricted to state government departments. 


Green is a rare colour in Australia. It is used to identity a police, fire or ambulance command post at an incident, and can only be used while stationary. They are generally affixed to mobile command vehicles (vans, small trucks) but can also be found on response vehicles. 

Flashing Headlights

Flashing or wig-wag headlights are generally reserved for emergency vehicles. The main exception to this is heavy vehicle escorts, which are often required to have a pair of wig-wag white lights on the front. 


Sirens are generally in the same category as red or blue lights, where they are restricted to emergency services such as police, fire, ambulance and other rescue vehicles. 

Road Transport (Vehicle Registration) Regulations 2017
Part 7, Division 20, Section 114
Road Safety (Vehicles) Regulations 2009
Schedule 2, Division 19, Section 118
Transport Operations (Road Use Management - Vehicle Standards and Safety) Regulation 2010
Part 3, Section 14
Transport Operations (Road Use Management - Vehicle Standards and Safety) Regulation 2010
Part 7, Division 20, Section 114
Road Traffic (Vehicles) Regulation 2014
Part 10, Division 8, Section 327
Road Transport (Vehicle Registration) Regulation 2000
Schedule 1, Part 1.8, Division 1.8.20, Section 1.120
Vehicle and Traffic (Vehicle Standards) Regulations 2014
Part 8, Division 18, Section 107
Motor Vehicles (Standards) Regulations 2017
Part 8, Division 19, Section 118