fb pixel

Log In

Reset Password

State law is clear about how much window-tint is legal

I have noticed many cars that have driver windows tinted so dark that others are not be able to see the driver. Seems this would be a potential danger to traffic officers and it certainly is to motorcyclists that would like to see a driver's actions. For instance, if a rider is approaching an intersection at which cross traffic is stopped and the rider could see the cell phone-talking, preoccupied driver, then perhaps the person would get a heads up to the driver's intentions. I also realize that eye contact does not assure safe passage. If dark tint is an equipment violation that is a $100 ticket and not just a spanking, perhaps this problem would be lessened. Could the volunteers that help with disabled- parking violations assist in citing these cars? - W. Pecchi

You are right Mr. Pecchi, darkly tinted front windows are a danger to police officers, to other roadway users such as motorcyclists or pedestrians, and even to drivers themselves when the darkly tinted window makes it difficult to see out, especially at night.

Oregon law requires that windows - the front two for pickups, vans and SUVs and all windows for passenger cars - not be tinted darker than to a point at which 35 percent of light still gets through.

That's unless the owner has a doctor's affidavit allowing the window to be more darkly tinted.

Some of the vehicles I've seen with this waiver often leave me wondering about how or why the prescription was given. I'm really hoping doctors out there are giving medical waivers to those that are truly qualified and not just because someone really wants darker car windows. Also, if a waiver is given, then I'd like to see the waiver contain an expiration date if possible, rather than a blanket waiver to cover an indefinite period of time.

Illegally tinted windows are an equipment violation, and it's not just a "spanking," nor even a $100 ticket. It's a $242 ticket, so it's got some sting to it. Volunteers who help with disabled parking violations have limited enforcement capacity, and that is enforcement of the disabled parking statutes only, so unfortunately we would not be able to use them to enforce tinted windows or other equipment violations. I know that when I'm out on patrol, especially in the summer, I often enforce the tinted window law. The entire sheriff's office traffic team has tint meters that measure the percentage of light coming through a window, so we can easily tell if a window's tint is illegal. I know the Medford Police Department has some meters as well, so the law is being enforced. I have access to an address to get two free tint meters for police agencies that don't have any of their own. All they need to do is contact me.