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Patientzero
Patientzero GRM+ Memberand New Reader
3/29/19 12:20 p.m.

What is the purpose of front license plate and why is it still an issue to get rid of them?

-Driving down the road you can see them

-Law enforcement driving behind you can't see them

-Parked in a parking lot or your driveway you can't see them

-Most(not all) speed cameras I've encountered photograph the rear plate

-In many cases adding a front license plate screws up aerodynamics and cooling which in turn hurts fuel economy

-At least half (not verified) of new cars don't even come with a mount but you still get ticketed for not having one but the manufacturer isn't required to put one on.

Can we please get rid of these? /rant

Ian F
Ian F MegaDork
3/29/19 12:24 p.m.

One of the good things about living in Pennsylvania. cheeky

Professor_Brap
Professor_Brap GRM+ Memberand Dork
3/29/19 12:25 p.m.

Living in Ohio, still never have a issue with getting pulled over for not having one. 

TheRX7Project
TheRX7Project Reader
3/29/19 12:26 p.m.

I've been told it is a good spot to aim laser at because they are more reflective than most paint.

ETA: I've never run one on my RX7, been pulled over several times and it has never been mentioned.

WonkoTheSane
WonkoTheSane GRM+ Memberand Dork
3/29/19 12:35 p.m.

Like everything else, it's all about revenue.  

See the flat box up there above the a-pillar spot light?  The one with 6 IR LEDs and two camera lenses?   That's an automated license plate scanner, which will instantly notify police just driving around a parking lot or along the street at normal speed whether you have unpaid registration, insurance, warrants out against you, etc.  

Not having a front plate cuts the utility down if you back into a parking space or the car parking behind you pulls up too close.  If you look up license plate scanner, you can find more info pretty easily.

 

I'm sorry, I meant it's for your safety.

dps214
dps214 New Reader
3/29/19 12:45 p.m.

I have (Ohio) front plates on all my cars because I know i'm not a particularly lucky person and don't want to push my luck/draw attention to myself any more than necessary. And having them there really doesn't bother me that much but if the law changed right now I'd go home and immediately rip them all off. I'm sure there is some (minor) justification for having them but as soon as cops start whining about having to actually put effort into their jobs...I'm 1000% on board with ditching them.

rattfink81
rattfink81 New Reader
3/29/19 12:48 p.m.

I’m glad PA doesn’t do them but they could be helpfully when the vehicle is used in a crime as there are cameras every where these days. Besides that I got nothing. 

As for the plate readers, they are usually mounted front and rear and atleast in PA cruising a private lot reading plates would pretty much be a waste of time since enforcement action is limited.  Also in the county I live in police depts get like $20 revenue from the citation which means if the officer goes to a hearing off duty their paying atleast 5 times that in overtime. 

NickD
NickD PowerDork
3/29/19 12:49 p.m.

And oddly, most police don't even seem that concerned. I didn't run a front plate on the Miata this year, because the stock mount would put it in the way of the intercooler and most relocated mounts put it in the way of the Rotrex traction fluid cooler. Despite being Smurf blue with a metallic purple rollbar and louder than a B-29 on takeoff, I must have gone by 100 NY state cops this summer and not a one of them said anything or even gave me a second look.

The first month or two, I kept the bracket and plate on the passenger side floorboard, so that if I did get stopped, I would just say that the bracket had just fallen off. Then after a while, I took it out of the car completely.

Rusnak_322
Rusnak_322 Dork
3/29/19 12:49 p.m.

A missing front plate can be just an excuse to stop a car when police lack any other probable cause to do so. Or in Cop speak - being able to stop a driver with a missing plate is a valuable law enforcement tool

frenchyd
frenchyd UltraDork
3/29/19 12:50 p.m.

  In reply to Patientzero :

Nationwide Approximately 1400 kids a year are killed or injured by people ignoring the flashing lights of school buses.  

If I see someone running my stop arm I copy their front license plate and they will get a $300  ticket in the mail.  

I used to try to copy down licenses after they ran the lights. But in mirrors numbers and letters are backwards and the moment they are within eyesight is too brief to read and decode.  

Try it!  Try to read the back license of someone going  by you.  

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/29/19 12:51 p.m.

In reply to WonkoTheSane :

Agreed. 

Ohio is considering going to One Plate. 

This article summarizes that two is better for safety. The reasons sited are:

  • Better for surveillance and camera images (revenue) 
  • Better for eye witness accounts
  • With 2 being law, displaying only one gives probable cause for a traffic stop. (revenue) 
  • Could save 1.5 million a year but a weak reason given why this won't matter. (should be the saving of revenue but doesn't matter) 
John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/29/19 12:55 p.m.

In reply to frenchyd :

In the modern world it would be so easy to equip your bus with cameras and at $300 per pop, seemingly cost effective, but, the entity paying for the busses and cameras is not the entity receiving the $300 so it will never happen. 

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/29/19 12:57 p.m.

This year, Ohio Historical Plates have officially gone to just one plate. 

Daylan C
Daylan C UltraDork
3/29/19 12:58 p.m.

In reply to Rusnak_322 :

So how often I wonder do these cops that rely on that go to pull somebody over for no front plate than see, just for example, my Kentucky plate on the back of the car and realize they have nothing?

SnowMongoose
SnowMongoose SuperDork
3/29/19 12:58 p.m.

I was pulled over for no front plate once.  

Was amusing because I do in fact have a front plate. In the OEM location.   

Counterpoint though, as someone with a custom plate, I like being able to show it at both ends.

Duke
Duke MegaDork
3/29/19 1:04 p.m.
Patientzero said:

-Law enforcement driving behind you can't see them

Law enforcement driving toward you or in front of you can see them, and they can't see your rear plate.

Did that really not occur to you, or are you just venting without thinking?

 

Patientzero said:

-Parked in a parking lot or your driveway you can't see them

Depends on whether you back in or not.

 

Patientzero said:

-In many cases adding a front license plate screws up aerodynamics and cooling which in turn hurts fuel economy

That's a manufacturers' design issue.  Take it up with them.

Professor_Brap
Professor_Brap GRM+ Memberand Dork
3/29/19 1:06 p.m.
John Welsh said:

This year, Ohio Historical Plates have officially gone to just one plate. 

WOOO, Im applying for 2 sets this year. 

Patientzero
Patientzero GRM+ Memberand New Reader
3/29/19 1:10 p.m.
Duke said:
Patientzero said:

-Law enforcement driving behind you can't see them

Law enforcement driving toward you or in front of you can see them, and they can't see your rear plate.

Did that really not occur to you, or are you just venting without thinking?

 

Patientzero said:

-Parked in a parking lot or your driveway you can't see them

Depends on whether you back in or not.

 

Patientzero said:

-In many cases adding a front license plate screws up aerodynamics and cooling which in turn hurts fuel economy

That's a manufacturers' design issue.  Take it up with them.

-Over 35mph you cannot read the license plate of a car driving at you while you're driving the other way, I've tried.  Parked maybe.

-What percent of people go to Walmart and back in a parking spot?  Like 0.2%?

-The manufacturers aren't required to put a plate holder on, why would they?  There are plenty of laws that govern what features a vehicle sold in the US must have, it's not one of them.

-By how defensive you are with that post I'm assuming you're in law enforcement?

trucke
trucke SuperDork
3/29/19 1:10 p.m.

North Carolina is a rear plate only state.

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/29/19 1:11 p.m.

In reply to Professor_Brap :

I just got for my 1994 in Feb and all you get is one plate. 

My two 1990s have had them. I was issued 2 plates each and I plan to run one. 

frenchyd
frenchyd UltraDork
3/29/19 1:16 p.m.

In reply to John Welsh :

All 220 of our buses have 5 cameras focused inside.  They usually can get a picture of the driver through the windows, which makes conviction a slam dunk. But the license plate isn’t ever in the picture.  

It’s not about money!!  Nearly every bus driver who sees a kid hit or killed quits because it’s such a horrible thing. We get to know our kids.  They tell us things they don’t tell others.   They give us gifts and cookies.  

I’ve had drivers pass my bus, with lights flashing!!!!! On the right hand side (curb) of the bus.  Only my slamming the door ( and giving her a bloody nose)  kept her alive. 

But we have an 8ft arm  to have the  kids walk far enough in front of bus so they have some warning in case someone  is ignoring the stop arm and flashing lights.  

 

RevRico
RevRico PowerDork
3/29/19 1:22 p.m.

Revenue collection and repo ability. It makes me chuckle a bit with no front plates in PA, to see cameras that capture the front of the car at the tollbooths and redlights. 

 

Nugi
Nugi Reader
3/29/19 1:24 p.m.

Been running w/o a front plate on the 'new' miata daily in Colorado for over a year now. 2 speeding tickets, no mention of the invisible front plate. It may help that the stainless grille covers the stock mounting points, there is an exception for cars with no mounting provisions. ;)

Oddly, when I moved from out of state, I got pulled (but not ticketed, out of state plate) over 5 seperate times for 'no front plate' in my 80s toyota pickup. Makes you think.

 

Professor_Brap
Professor_Brap GRM+ Memberand Dork
3/29/19 1:25 p.m.

In reply to John Welsh :

Did they go by build date or by the title? 

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
3/29/19 1:29 p.m.

They go by model year. 

I tried once to prove my 90 Miata was manufactured in May of 89.

My logic then was that in June of 2014 (my birthday and renewal month) that I had a 25 yr old car.

I could not get the plates until June of 2015

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