The use of two warnings triangles if your vehicle breaks down has been a legal requirement in Spain since 1999. These will now be phased out under the latest DGT plans to improve road safety.
At the moment, if a vehicle breaks down then the driver is supposed to aid other motorists by putting out two warning triangles. One goes 50m behind the stranded vehicle to warn traffic that there is a hazard ahead. If the vehicle is on a two-way road then the driver puts another triangle 50m in front of the vehicle to warn oncoming traffic.
A new law was passed and will see the replacement of the warning triangles with a flashing orange light. It came into effect in July 2021 although both means of advising other traffic will be legal until the end of 2024.
Tragically, between 2019 and 2020 twenty-eight road deaths occurred whilst people were getting out of their vehicle. This new method should reduce that figure.
PLEASE NOTE: From 1 January 2026 the V-16 warning light must also have a built-in geolocation. Older versions of the V16 device will have to be replaced. The geolocation system interacts with a DGT (Direccion General de Trafico) system which notifies the traffic authorities of the location of your vehicle. Both types are available to purchase but if you are buying one or replacing one then we recommend you purchase one of the new connected type V16 warning lights.
The V16 emergency light can be placed on the roof which will avoid having to leave the safety of the vehicle in what could be a busy and dangerous road. They are fitted with a magnet to keep them in place.
Apart from emitting a flashing orange light to warn other traffic the latest models are fitted with a facility, through connected technology. This technology will communicate the activation of the V16 warning light and give its geopositioning.
These new connected V16 lights are already available.
After 1 July 2021 there will be no need to carry the two warning triangles if you have a homologated V16 emergency light in Spain.
Make sure the product you buy is homologated. This means it meets the legal requirements set out by the Spanish authorities. In addition, if you are buying it now then we recommend you buy the connceted type V16 light to avoid having to replace it again from 2026 when they must all be connected.
The connected types available include:
If you already possess a non-connected type it remains valid until 2 January 2026.
The V16 light is already widely available.
You can source the three indicated in the section above by following the weblinks provided there. Alternatively, you can purchase products from carrefour or Amazon for example. Again remember to opt for the “connected” models to avoid them being obsolete by 2026.