Front and Rear Lamps – what are the legal requirements?

The information below is kindly provided by the Caravan Industry Association of Australia -August 2021 – and has been reproduced here to help customers understand the rules regarding the correct location of lamps on vehicles.

For towable vehicles, the end outline marker lamps (front and rear) must not be more than 400mm from the extreme
outer edge of the vehicle. Note: The overall width measurement includes any overhanging body structure or
permanently mounted equipment (eg. awning, storage rack frame, etc.)
End outline marker lamps are to be mounted as high as possible on the towable vehicle.
The diagram below is a further illustration of the above information.

Above – Towable vehicles – required lamp locations

Motorised vehicles such as motor-homes have the same requirements for rear end outline marker lamps of towable vehicles. However, there is a different height requirement for front end outline marker lamps. The front end outline marker lamp shall be fitted no lower than the top edge of the windscreen. Width requirement for the front end outline marker lamps are the same – no more than 400mm from the extreme outer edge of the body structure or permanently mounted equipment.

Above- Motorised vehicles – required lamp locations

For both towable and motorised vehicles, any end outline marker lamps are required to have a clear field of view over an angle of 80 degrees outwards, 5 degrees above horizontal and 20 degrees below horizontal.

Front Position Lamps
For TA and TB vehicle category code, front position lamps are required to be fitted with an orientation towards the front
and in height between 250mm and 2100mm from the ground, or 1500mm from the ground for towable vehicles
exceeding 3500Kg GTM – vehicle category code TC and TD). The front position lamps must not be more than 150mm
from the extreme outer edge of the vehicle (including all permanent components and/or equipment).
The distance between the inner edges of the pair of front position lamps must be at least 600mm.
Front position lamps may not be required if side marker lamps are fitted in accordance with ADR 13 placement
requirements.
Front position lamps are optional on towable vehicles with less than 1600mm overall width. It is also optional on
towable vehicles with over 1600mm to 1800mm overall width and less than 4000mm overall length.
The diagram below is a further illustration of the above information.

Stop, Tail and Indicator Lamps

For towable and motorised vehicles, stop, tail (rear position) and indicator lamps are required to be fitted between
350mm and 1500mm height from the ground.

The stop, tail and indicator lamps must not be more than 400mm from the extreme outer edge of the vehicle (including all permanent components such as awnings.)

The diagram below is a further illustration of the above information.

Problem areas to look out for include:

• Height of lamps – always measured from the ground to the top of the apparent surfaces.
• Visibility – lamp being obscured by equipment such as stone guard, toolboxes, jerry can holders or spare
tyres.
• End outline marker lamps missing or not installed.
• Lamps placed at distance greater than inboard distance requirements.
• Lamps installed on a surface that is not forward facing, such that the visibility angles are not achieved.


Recommendation:

To ensure that front and rear lamps are fitted correctly, it is recommended that accredited businesses review ADR 13
and VSB 1 to familiarize with the requirements of front and rear lamps on recreational vehicles.

You can download the latest copy of VSB1 here

Credit: Caravan Industry Association of Australia. Title of Post – Front and Rear Lamps August 2021.https://www.caravanindustry.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/FRL_0821.pdf?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Understanding+your+legal+requirements+relating+to+Front+and+Rear+Lamps&utm_content=Front+and+Rear+Lamps&utm_source=comms.caravanindustry.com.au