Can the backup running lights be portable and battery powered?

No. The backup running lights must be powered by the boat's main electrical system.

A common solution is to use a masthead tricolor as the primary running light, with the backup lights installed at deck or lifeline level.

The backup running lights can be portable, but they must be capable of being easily plugged into the boat's electrical system and must meet the required brightness specification. They do not have to be at lifeline height.