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Old 09-01-2009, 11:53 AM   #1
SkiWrex
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Default Should Utah change it's window tint laws?

Over the last couple weeks I've been talking to Legislature Bradley Daw about Utah relaxing the 43% tint law on front windows, and possibly consider allowing around 35%, our conversations have been as follows:

ME:
Quote:
I was told to contact a legislator on my questions regarding Utah's motor vehicle tint laws.

Statute 41-6a-1635 UCA, which prevents a front side window from having tint exceeding 43% light transmittance. Although I have no major disagreement against Utah's window tint laws, in fact I do think they are more reasonable than many other states, I would however like the state to possibly consider the allowance of darker tint on the front side windows, possibly up to but no more than 30%. My reasons being that Utah is technically a desert state and the UV rays we experience here are often intense. In my experience, driving on I-15 in the middle of the day with the sun in full glare can be agitating, and 43% tint doesn't provide much relief. This isn't experienced only during the summer months either, driving on a sunny day in the winter with snow on the ground reflecting the sunlight into your face can be distracting as well.

I am not asking to allow drivers to tint their windows as dark as they want, but I do think around 30%-35% on the front sides is reasonable, something similar to Arizona's tint laws.
Brad Daw:
Quote:
Is it possible to get tinting that fully blocks UV rays while meeting the 43% visible light transmittance?
ME:
Quote:
All tint blocks up to 99% of UV rays, but lighter tint allows more actual light and heat to get into the car. Kind of like looking towards the sun with a really light pair of sunglasses vs. a dark pair. The light sunglasses will block uv rays but your eyes will still be irritated from the brightness. Like the dark sunglasses, Darker tint eases the harshness of the sun's brightness, not to mention makes it harder for thieves to peer in through the windows and see if anything is worth stealing. And it adds to the car's cosmetic appeal.
Brad Daw:

Quote:
I'll ask legislative research to look into it....

....I got the text of the law from legislative research. My next question is, what kind of safety track record does Arizona have. Can we say with some confidence that their law does not cause any increase in accidents?
ME:
Quote:
As far as I know, the higher rate of accidents in Phoenix was caused by speeding and not darker tinted windows. As for the rest of Arizona, they had pretty low accident rates compared to Phoenix. Also we could look at the stats for California, the reason being is that they don't allow any tint whatsoever on the front windows.
Brad:
Quote:
I sent your request into the department of public safety to see what they would say about it. Here is their response:

========================
Brad, I spoke with the Commissioner and he said that he is comfortable with the law that is in place now and the reason being that the darker windows have less visibility for the driver at night. He said like wearing sun glasses at night. The law used to state no tint at all and over the years there has been compromise to get it to where it is at now. There is another concern for law enforcement, that is when an officer approaches a car at night and the driver side and front passenger windows are tinted dark, the officer is unable to observe the inside of the car on approach, which takes some of the comfort away for the officer. I know it is hard to understand unless you have been in that situation. If you would like to do a ride along with one of our Troopers one night so you can see first hand what the concern is, I can arrange for you to do this. I do appreciate you asking for our input, and if you have any other questions, on this or anything else, don't hesitate to ask. Thanks, Debbie
================================

So the question is how badly do you want to be able to change the law? This is what DPS would be saying in committee and you would have to have a pretty convincing counter-argument. Let me know what you think.
So what does the RMIC think? Should I just drop the pursuit of getting darker tinted windows? Or what arguments could there be in favor of it? I want your opinions/Input.

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Old 09-01-2009, 11:56 AM   #2
toddguy
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alls i wanna know is why the American Fork Police has hecka dark windows on their dodge chargers.... is that fair? i think you should pursue this. 30% isn't that dark, but it would be dark enough to make a difference. my moms saab has 30% on the front and i drive just fine at night.

Last edited by toddguy; 09-01-2009 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:10 PM   #3
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True. Most of the cop cars I have ever seen have tint that is dark as hell.
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:13 PM   #4
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Wow, that's pretty cool. Here's my belief: It isn't worth the hassle. I have 20% all around and never ever get bothered. I had 35% on the front in the Evo, also never bothered. The key to getting away with it is right there in the message from Debbie (speaking of that, I wanna go for a ride along sometime, I hear everyone who is a citizen is allowed one ride along or something like that... it'd be interesting).

Quote:
There is another concern for law enforcement, that is when an officer approaches a car at night and the driver side and front passenger windows are tinted dark, the officer is unable to observe the inside of the car on approach, which takes some of the comfort away for the officer.
So if you get pulled over... You roll down your windows, both sides, if not all 4.

The whole "sunglasses at night" thing is rediculous. If they really think that, they should change the back window laws to at "best" 20% instead of limo/5% like it is now. 5% is SO hard to see out of. The rear two side windows and my rear window I use WAY more than my front two windows. If they made more shades of tint I'd be all for like 25-30% all the way around being the legal limit, 35% is too light, and 20% is a little too dark for my taste.
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UT_Evo View Post
If they made more shades of tint I'd be all for like 25-30% all the way around being the legal limit, 35% is too light, and 20% is a little too dark for my taste.
2nd this.
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:18 PM   #6
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I wanna know why I was driving up the hill in lindon and a cop was riding my a'' the whole time and speeding till i moved over (no his overheads were not on)? I like that they try to push u to speed!
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:19 PM   #7
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oh and on topic, 35% would be great. thats where I am at though now and have never had an issue.
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:44 PM   #8
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yeah, I could argue that 35% isn't all that much darker.Iit's interesting that we can go as dark as we want on the rear windows, which is just as or more dangerous, i hate backing my car up at night, I can't see crap! But I don't want to bring that up or they'll probably re-think it and allow only 43% on all the windos.
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Old 09-01-2009, 12:48 PM   #9
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I'm 20 on rear and 30 on front. With this tint I do not get hassled because you can see into the car from the rear. I do not feel that the 30% makes it hard to see at night.
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Old 09-01-2009, 01:09 PM   #10
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I think ~35% is reasonable.

Incidentally, my 99RS has been pulled over specifically for having dark tint. It happened in southern Utah. I think the officer was either bored, wanted to use his new tint meter or was using it as an excuse to fish for controlled substances.
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Old 09-01-2009, 01:20 PM   #11
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I have 20% all around and its perfect. With the 43% percent you might as well not have it at all cause it does so little. 30% would be good, if it was legal I would just go with that. But sense its not I might as well get what I want sense its illegal anyways. I had limo on my truck and its to dark you cant see **** at night unless you roll down the windows.
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Old 09-01-2009, 01:24 PM   #12
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tint over my reverse lights has been interesting at night
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Old 09-01-2009, 01:29 PM   #13
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I had 20% all around for years on my rs. I maybe lucky, but in 4 years I got pulled over 5-6 times for random reasons and I rolled down my windows and they never said anything about it.
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Old 09-01-2009, 02:58 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Touge86 View Post
I wanna know why I was driving up the hill in lindon and a cop was riding my a'' the whole time and speeding till i moved over (no his overheads were not on)? I like that they try to push u to speed!
They break worse laws than "following too close." My favorite is seeing them run through lights with their lights on and then shut off their lights.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiWrex View Post
yeah, I could argue that 35% isn't all that much darker.Iit's interesting that we can go as dark as we want on the rear windows, which is just as or more dangerous, i hate backing my car up at night, I can't see crap! But I don't want to bring that up or they'll probably re-think it and allow only 43% on all the windos.
I really don't think you stating that to the guy will wind up getting them to reverse the laws. I honestly think you should push for 20% or 30% all around. What Helmut said he has is perfect, 30% in front (wish I would've done that, actually) and 20% in rears. Why anyone needs darker than 20% is beyond me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by super-ru View Post
I had 20% all around for years on my rs. I maybe lucky, but in 4 years I got pulled over 5-6 times for random reasons and I rolled down my windows and they never said anything about it.
Yeah, I always just roll down my front windows.
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Old 09-01-2009, 03:03 PM   #15
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I agree window tint law should be a little more lenient for front windows.

I hate being the type that does what ever I want anyway but I have to admit I run 35% tint on my front glass when combined with the glass actually makes it about 28%.
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Old 09-01-2009, 03:12 PM   #16
ashergrey
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If you think contacting your legislator on this will get anything changed, I have a bridge to sell you.

The Dept. of Public Safety and police agencies from all over the state would strongly lobby against any such change on the grounds of officer safety. When you have a state senator who's also the Ogden police chief and he just happens to sit on the committee that would have to approve on that change... well... you do the math.
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Old 09-01-2009, 03:45 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashergrey View Post
If you think contacting your legislator on this will get anything changed, I have a bridge to sell you.

The Dept. of Public Safety and police agencies from all over the state would strongly lobby against any such change on the grounds of officer safety. When you have a state senator who's also the Ogden police chief and he just happens to sit on the committee that would have to approve on that change... well... you do the math.
Then fight for a compromise. 30% all the way around. Get these thugs who run 5% in the rear off the street.

PS. I'll take two bridges please.
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Old 09-01-2009, 03:58 PM   #18
ashergrey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UT_Evo View Post
Then fight for a compromise. 30% all the way around. Get these thugs who run 5% in the rear off the street.

PS. I'll take two bridges please.
So I'm a thug because I went 5 in the back? I don't want 30 all around.
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Old 09-01-2009, 04:10 PM   #19
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Ya 30 all around would be terrible. I'd like to keep my thuggish 5% in the back
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Old 09-01-2009, 04:12 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashergrey View Post
So I'm a thug because I went 5 in the back? I don't want 30 all around.
I run 5% in the back too son!
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Old 09-01-2009, 04:27 PM   #21
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When I bought my STi it had 15% all the way around and it was nice, I had to strip it off to pass, but I think it might be like beating a dead horse with these people who make the laws in this whack state (the double line car pool line barrier is the stupidest thing ever!) I might just talk to Brad and see what other things they would consider, maybe they'll consider 25% all the way around, or allow it to be put to a vote. Now that Hunstman is gone, all the common sense in Utah's leadership has left with him.
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Old 09-01-2009, 05:35 PM   #22
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5% in the back is fine. There are delivery trucks and vans that don't even have windows in the back so why would you limit the people that have them in there cars, when the trucks and vans dont have them.
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Old 09-01-2009, 05:36 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashergrey View Post
So I'm a thug because I went 5 in the back? I don't want 30 all around.
You, IMO, are more "dangerous" than someone who had lighter tint in the rear and darker in the front. I was actually hoping you had 5 in the back for argument's sake 15 should be the darkest legal limit in the rears. 5% is way too dark and way dangerous IMO, and I'm sure the Dept. of Public Safety would agree.

And I meant no offense by thug, some of my best friends are thugs. They also have 5% in the rears If they think darker than 43% up front is bad, but having 5% in the rears is okay then they have a confusing problem. Luckily for everyone with 5%, their main concern is officer safety when they approach your window (you should have your window down anyway, so I don't understand that) and not public safety.
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Old 09-01-2009, 05:37 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wantsti View Post
5% in the back is fine. There are delivery trucks and vans that don't even have windows in the back so why would you limit the people that have them in there cars, when the trucks and vans dont have them.
How many times have you had your Porsche essentially run over by someone in one of these delivery trucks while they backed out? Most of them are required to have extended side mirrors, fyi.

But that is a very good argument.
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Old 09-01-2009, 05:46 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UT_Evo View Post
You, IMO, are more "dangerous" than someone who had lighter tint in the rear and darker in the front. I was actually hoping you had 5 in the back for argument's sake 15 should be the darkest legal limit in the rears. 5% is way too dark and way dangerous IMO, and I'm sure the Dept. of Public Safety would agree.

And I meant no offense by thug, some of my best friends are thugs. They also have 5% in the rears If they think darker than 43% up front is bad, but having 5% in the rears is okay then they have a confusing problem. Luckily for everyone with 5%, their main concern is officer safety when they approach your window (you should have your window down anyway, so I don't understand that) and not public safety.
The Department of Public Safety is tasked with enforcing the laws of the state as enacted by the legislature. The department can, as a member of the executive branch of government, advocate or petition the legislative branch for changes to the laws as it sees fit (as it has with the new texting while driving law, for example). To this point, it has not advocated a change away from the 5% rear law so I doubt very much that the leadership of the department agree very strongly with your personal opinion. If they did, they would have long ago requested the legislature change the law. DPS' silence in the matter can be interpreted as implicit approval.

What I'm saying is, you are going to see resistance to changing the front tint limit from law enforcement because it more directly impacts the work they do. Most any officer, trooper or deputy will tell you that the most dangerous part of their job is random traffic stops... and most of those officers who are attacked while making a stop are not shot through the rear window of the car. Increased visibility through the rear windows may be nice for them, but it's not as critical as visibility through the front windows.

In the end, the law is crafted to balance a driver's right to protect personal privacy with the public's reasonable expectation of safety and security. I, for one, have no problems with the law as it stands.
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