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Dim-Out Regulations
Public compliance with the dim-out regulations has been good, but not good enough—according to official reports.

Since this is not a situation in which partial compliance can be sufficient, but is a war measure upon which the lives of thousands of people may depend, it may be necessary to accomplish by compulsion what persuasion fails to do.

There is no excuse for deliberate violation, and those who persist in it will be proper subjects for disciplinary action.

However, civilian defense authorities are agreed that the general picture of compliance in San Francisco is satisfactory, and the exceptions are mostly due to confusion and misunderstanding.

In this connection, it should be observed that all of the confusion is not attributable to the public.

This has led to inconvenience and even harassment, particularly for motorists. Over the past weekend, many motorists driving in areas where drastic dimming of lights was not required were stopped by over-zealous and clearly misinformed wardens with demands not authorized or intended by official regulations.

Undoubtedly, this is one of the "bugs" in the program to be cleared up. It certainly should be cleared up as soon as possible, because one of the important things about a program of this kind is that those enforcing it know what they are doing and why.

The dim-out schedule has been carefully prepared. It should be strictly observed and enforced. But where it does not apply, the public should not be subjected to unwarranted harassment—especially when the essential purposes of the program are more harmed than helped thereby.


Editorial in: The Call-Bulletin
San Francisco, August 18, 1942

OCD Continues Dim-Out Tips

Here are more questions and answers, prepared by the OCD [Office of Civilian Defense], to assist you in complying with the new dim-out regulations which become effective in the entire Bay Area, Sunday, Oct. 25:

Q.—Our house is visible from the sea. Are any additional restrictions on lighting placed against us?

A.—Yes. People living in these areas visible from the sea must not only shade those windows and doors visible from the sea, but they must not allow any light to shine upward from any window, skylight or lightwell, no matter what direction they face. Like everybody else, you must keep shades drawn as low as the bottom of the lowest light in the room.

Q.—Our city feels that the quickest and easiest way to control illumination from street lights is to turn them off, or at least to extinguish entirely a large portion of them. Is this policy approved?

A.—The policy is wrong, definitely. Your street lighting was installed originally to safeguard lives and property. That protection is as necessary today as when the lights were installed the new proclamation effective Oct. 25 requires that street lights be shielded on the top to reduce upward rays of light. Except for areas visible from the sea, street lighting should otherwise be normal.

San Francisco News
October 17, 1942

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