Dodge County Sheriff Explains Green Lights on County Vehicles

(Juneau) The Dodge County Sheriff says recent changes at the state level have made putting green lights on highway maintenance vehicles possible. Dale Schmidt says the county’s Highway Commissioner Brian Field reached out to him last year asking if it was legal to put green lights on his vehicles.

At the time it was not, so Field and the Wisconsin County Highway Association worked with the legislature to amend state statutes. Schmidt highlights a main reason for switching from amber lights to green.

“Really what we want people to understand is those green lights on those trucks are highway trucks…we want you to know well in advance…they stick out in the snow really well, you’re able to see these green lights,” says Schmidt.

“We want you to know there is a highway truck up head. We want you to slow down…it’s not just some other maintenance vehicle. Be aware…don’t want you to be involved in any type of crash. We want you to be safe around those highway trucks. It’s an identification change.”

Not all Dodge County highway maintenance vehicles will have green lights right away as the transition will take some time. Schmidt says the biggest holdup is the cost.

“Well, it’s not light bulbs anymore, they’re LED light sticks and every one of them are roughly around $80-to-$90-dollars apiece,” says Schmidt. “It’s going to add up if you’re doing 50 trucks. As you replace lights that go out, that’s the time to do that.”

Commissioner Field says this change has been in effect in Michigan already and is (quote) “proving to be very beneficial.” He says according to Michigan officials the green color can be detected more clearly and brightly by the human eye than traditional amber lighting.