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Warning triangles have been mandatory in Spain since 1999, and are now being replaced by flashing warning lights which can be used in the event of an emergency, which will become the norm from 1 January 2026. During this transition period, you may use either.

However, the DGT has published an update whereas from July 1 2023, the use of warning triangles on motorways is exempted in the event of immobilisation of the vehicle due to an incident or breakdown (no longer mandatory). Its use is still mandatory when these circumstances occur on conventional roads.

The DGT has published an instruction in which this exception is included, mainly motivated by the following issues:

  • The high number of deaths on high-capacity roads (autopistas and autovías) in recent years. The average number of pedestrians killed after being run over after getting out of the vehicle in the last five years has been 22 people.
  • Due to the traffic conditions that occur on motorways where there is a high intensity of traffic and high speed.
  • Because the data on incidents on this type of road where there has been a run-over and where there was an immobilised vehicle show that driving along the shoulder, staying on it, trying to repair a breakdown or even placing and subsequent removal of the danger warning triangles significantly increase the risk of being run over.

In view of all these reasons and taking into account that the placement of warning triangles of danger is not feasible on motorways due to seriously compromising the safety of people, having to travel on foot on the road, their placement is exempted.

The instruction published today will be without effect on January 1, 2026, the date on which it will be mandatory for all drivers to carry the V16 signal in the vehicle, which is the one that will put the definitive end to the warning triangles of danger.

It is a good idea to purchase a warning light now, and use that instead, although exercise caution as only the connected versions will be permitted after the definitive change in the law, so buying a cheaper version now could prove a false economy.

Remember, only those lights which are “connected” will be allowed in the future, so please check before purchasing a standard, or unauthorised version, even though they may appear cheaper.

You can buy the officially recognised lights in many stores, and they are available at Amazon. There are only six models currently approved. Here are four of them. Other lights are approved by the DGT for use NOW, but will not be permitted in the future, so you will have to buy one of these soon.

Help Flash iot
1Our Pick
Help Flash iot

Mandatory Emergency Light for Car – V16 Approved Signaling in Case of Danger – Connected Light to Save Lives – Provides Coverage and Exact Geolocation to DGT 3.0

2FREE First Aid Box

Emergency Light V16 Connected DGT 3.0 Approved MANDATORY, SIM and Data Service Included until 2038, Magnetized Base, IP54 Resistance + Mini First Aid Box Set

PF Led One V16
PF Led One V16

Car Emergency Light – DGT Approved V16 Signal – Connected and Geolocated Beacon – 12 Years Warranty – 1000m Visibility – 9V Battery – Red [Energy Class A+]

SOS ROAD Connected
SOS ROAD Connected

Emergency Light with Geolocation for Car DGT 3.0 Approved (Mandatory) – V16 Beacon with Free Data Plan until 2038 – Magnetic Base – Water and Dust Resistant (2)

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