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2011 Toyota Prius fishtailing light

My Prius ABS fishtailing light came on Monday night. Tuesday it was off again. Drove all day for Lyft.

THEN at 8:00 PM - terrifying!! Fishtailing as I turned to enter the ramp to the 405 here in LA!

I shudder to think of it happening on entering the freeway!!

What to do?

Well , I have never seen a Fish Tailing light. The light is telling you that something is wrong with the ABS or your front tires are loosing traction . You might just need new tires .

I think he means the traction control light. It comes on when one of the sensors detect one of the wheels spinning faster than the others. If you’re fish tailing I suspect you need new tires and/or you need to slow down for conditions. They usually recommend that Priuses have low rolling resistance tires which are better for gas mileage but not as good for traction

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What’s the tread depth on your tires right now?

And how much water was on the road?

More than likely, the problem lies within the Vehicle Stability Control system, not the ABS.

Hopefully his tires are not loose! :smirk:
On the other hand, if there is insufficient tread remaining, it is entirely possible that the tires are losing traction.

No, I think he is referring to the warning light for the Vehicle Stability Control system.


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You would think that someone who drives for Lyft would at least look in the manual to see what the light means . Also it seems this person does not really know what fish tailing is .

Yes, but then again, some people don’t know the difference between “lose” and “loose”.


Hmmm. Not nice. I expect an apology. I remember the neighbor had a new 59 Chevy with the 348 (I think) and posi-traction to pull his big boat with. When he would floor the thing from a dead stop, after the squealing, the rear end would tend to sway back and forth as traction was transferred from one rear wheel to the other. That to me was fish tailing as I lernt it as a kid :grin:.

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OP, just curious about your post’s unusual terminology. Do you call this warning light a “fishtailing light” b/c it shows an icon on the dash with wavy lines like the car is sort of sliding back and forth, right and left? If so I can see how that might look like a fish-tailing symbol. Maybe in retrospect the folks at GM should have installed that light on the old Corvair … :wink:

Yes, that is what the warning lights for the Vehicle Stability Control system look like, or at least the ones that I have seen look like that. But, I have never heard this referred to as a “fishtailing light”.

Can we now expect that people will start referring to the “Genie’s Lamp Light” when their Low Oil Pressure warning light starts glowing?


Yeah I kinda wondered about who came up with that symbol. Nothing I ever remember looking like that. Guess they had to put something in there beside “oil” in five different languages but can’t think of anything better. That’s the global car industry for ya.

Yes that’s what I meant, I thought it was called traction control. Thanks for the catch :slight_smile: Now that it’s been mentioned once or twice I wonder if the OP will refer to it as the VSC light or the fishtail light?? :thinking: