fb pixel

Log In


Reset Password

Other Editors Say:

Glass tinting rules too lenient

Dark vehicle windows are a safety hazard for drivers and for police

The (Albany) Democrat-Herald

One of the details in the James Perez shooting in Portland was that before the young man was shot and killed by the police, he was driving around in a car with heavily tinted windows. This apparently was one of the factors that made the police, patrolling a drug neighborhood, suspicious enough to stop the car. Then the tinted glass kept them from looking inside from afar. Events twisted out of control, and the unarmed driver was shot.

In a much more routine sense, tinted automobile glass is a safety hazard and should not be allowed. Check the Oregon state driver's manual: No sign, poster, one-way glass, adhesive film or glaze application is allowed on the windshield, windows forward of or on either side of the driver's seat or on the rear windows if the material prohibits or impairs the ability to see into or out of the vehicle.

So how come so many vehicles have windows that other drivers cannot see through?

Because, also from the driver's manual: Aftermarket tinting material may be applied to the side and rear windows if the material has a light transmittance of 50 percent or more; has a light reflectance of 13 percent or less; and the total light transmittance of the window with the tinting material applied is 35 percent or more.

Light transmittance? Reflectance? Percentage this and percentage that? It is all nonsense if it means that drivers cannot see through the glass of vehicles they meet on the road ' and that is increasingly the case.

— It is especially dangerous now that some sport utility vehicles have taken on gargantuan proportions, lumbering down the road like little mountains. With tinted windows, they obscure other drivers' view of traffic far more than is safe. As far as their effect on sight clearance is concerned, they might as well all be dump trucks.

On the freeway, at stop signs watching for oncoming traffic, trying to see around parked cars on corners at city streets ' in all these situations it is helpful to be able to see through the window glass of other vehicles. Being unable to do so adds to the routine dangers of life on our roads.

The tinting of auto glass so you can't see through it ' all but the slightest amount to shield occupants from summer's glare ' ought to be made against the law.