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You may be seeing blue lights on tow trucks (CANADA)

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Tow truck operators will be allowed to use blue lights to increase their visibility and safety while working on Alberta highways. Effective June 30, the one-year pilot project will allow the optional use of blue lights on tow trucks.

“I want to thank MLA Brad Rutherford for advocating for this change in his Private Member’s Bill 207. Too many tow truck drivers are involved in collisions or dangerous situations because motorists have difficulty seeing them while they’re working. This pilot project is intended to increase safety for these operators and will help determine the best lighting for tow trucks in Alberta.”

Rajan Sawhney, Minister of Transportation

Additional consideration is also being given to include snowplow operators in the pilot this fall.


“Every Albertan deserves to be safe at work, even if their office is at the side of the road. Today we affirm this point and we’re grateful to the government for this announcement. This change is as simple as it is profound, and it will make a life-saving difference for Alberta’s essential tow operators and the Albertans they’re responding to.”

Michelle Chimko, president and CEO, Alberta Motor Association

These changes are in addition to new rules to protect highway workers under the Traffic Safety Amendment Act. Starting spring 2023, all motorists travelling in the same direction on multi-lane highways will need to slow down to at least 60 km/h and allow one lane of space, where possible, when passing stopped emergency vehicles, tow trucks and roadside workers’ vehicles when their lights are flashing. Motorists travelling in both directions on single-lane highways will be required to slow down when passing roadside vehicles and workers.


Quick facts

  • Since December 2019, the Alberta Motor Association reports there have been at least 36 near misses and 14 serious roadside incidents involving Alberta tow trucks and passing vehicles.
  • Between March 2018 and March 2021, there were 128 collisions involving snowplows contracted by Alberta Transportation.
  • Alberta Transportation is working with the University of Alberta to research possible light configuration changes for snowplows.
  • Private Member’s Bill 207, the Traffic Safety (Tow Truck Warning Lamps) Amendment Act, to allow blue lights on tow trucks was introduced in the Alberta legislature on April 28. 



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