OT Should I tell the police?

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On Wed, 15 Oct 2014 08:29:52 -0400, Stormin Mormon

My mother put some plastic fern or ball on the antenna, but that was more so she could find it in a parking lot than to distinguish it from cars that looked alike.
My antenna retracts, so I couldn't do that if I wanted to. And a lot of people don' have antennas?, or have little ones.
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On 10/15/14, 2:31 PM, micky wrote:

Some parking lots are huge. I've had the experience of approaching a parked car that looked like mine. I've experienced a moment of fear when I walked down the row where I thought it was, and it wasn't.
A strip of red reflective tape, 2 or 3" wide, across the car, just above the windshield, and another just above the back window. If you can see the roof line, you'll know your car from hundreds of yards away.
If you're coming over a rise at 60, and a car is at a stop sign ahead, only your roof line may be visible. Depending on the color of your car and the background, it may be inconspicuous. The strip of red should catch the driver's eye.
That tape is hard to remove. If I were looking for cars to steal, I wouldn't consider one with red tape that made it stand out like a sore thumb.
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Don't do what I did once. In a rental car went to Disney, Anaheim [forgot to really, really identify exactly where parked] go to Disney World and spend at least four hours, then come out and look for a car that you've really only seen from the INSIDE! well, ...uh, it's white.
The only thing that lightened my day was since the four hours were spent in lines, I got my money for entrance AND the money for parking refunded! Plus, some nice guy in a pickup truck offered to drive us up and down the rows and rows in the area I thought it was parked in. So we did find the rental rather quickly.
Now, to avoid that scenario I walk backwards away from the car to remember what it should look like as I'm going towards it. [trick learned from a mountaineer] So far works well. You see the way the car sits, the landscape, the background, haven't lost another car since then.
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On 10/15/2014 3:44 PM, RobertMacy wrote:

I do that "walk backwards" now and again. Great technique. I've also been known to put some thing on the dash board, like pair of gloves.
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Christopher A. Young
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there is also http://publicdata.com/ for 9.95 you get 400 searches a month. used them before and can cancel anytime
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just tryin to keep business in the great state of Tejas<g>
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wrote:

And red reflective tape on the front of a car is ILLEGAL.
I generally don't have a problem - my vehicles are usually rather UNIQUE. But I get out of the vehicle, imprint on my brain exactly where it is - like the row that lines up with the L on Big Lots, or whatever If I KNOW where I parked it, I can always find it quickly. If I just park and run it can take a little longer to figure it out. Nothing like walking into the mall, walking around for a while, shopping for this and that, and forgetting not only where you left the car, but what entrance you came in- - - -. Or like my wife, forgetting which vehicle she was driving - walking past the car looking for the OTHER one!!
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On 10/15/14, 7:56 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Where is it illegal?
My bike has a fairing 33" wide. It was black when I bought it in 1972. From the front view, most of it was the windshield, which sometimes broke when I hit potholes.
The more massive I looked from the front, the less I had to leave the road because a driver looked right at me and violated my right of way. To look more massive and make the windshield smaller and less prone to breakage, I used fiberglass to extend the fairing up to 52". I painted the whole fairing yellow. Above it, across the base of the windshield, I put a piece of red reflective tape, 2" wide and 20" long. It's at the height of the top of a car windshield. I didn't care if it was reflective. I wanted it bright and permanent.
I've ridden that way in 49 states and 6 provinces. No one has ever told me it was illegal or even shown disapproval.
I haven't done it to a car, but in some circumstances I've thought a bright color just above the windshield would have made a car easier to spot, like my bike.
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On Wednesday, October 15, 2014 8:36:22 PM UTC-4, J Burns wrote:

I would assume verywhere in the US. Red is reserved for the rear, amber or white only on the front. That is definitely true for lights; I would assu me the same would be true for retroreflective sheeting. If nothing else, i t's a spectacularly bad idea, as it gives a conflicting message to other ro ad users - red indicates the rear of a vehicle, therefore it ought to be mo ving away from the viewer, but in reality it's the front and it's not.
Other colors (blue, green, etc.) are illegal as well; blue because it is re served for emergency vehicles and other colors simply because they have no function assigned.
If you wish to research this in more depth, start with FMVSS 108, that is t he basic document that lays out requirements for lighting and conspicuity d evices for road vehicles.
nate
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On Wednesday, October 15, 2014 9:58:15 PM UTC-4, N8N wrote:

or white only on the front. That is definitely true for lights; I would as sume the same would be true for retroreflective sheeting. If nothing else, it's a spectacularly bad idea, as it gives a conflicting message to other road users - red indicates the rear of a vehicle, therefore it ought to be moving away from the viewer, but in reality it's the front and it's not.

reserved for emergency vehicles and other colors simply because they have n o function assigned.

the basic document that lays out requirements for lighting and conspicuity devices for road vehicles.

To add; I've used 3M retroreflective tape on both bicycles and cars; I've d one "DIY wheel reflectors" with it on some racey type wheels (Velocity Deep V's) looks Fredly but better Fred than dead. I also added a red/white str ipe on the latch area of the doors just in case I miss a car approaching fr om the rear when parallel parking and I throw the driver's door open (my ca r is a coupe with long doors, and there aren't any factory supplied lights or reflectors on the doors other than "puddle lights" - an oversight IMHO o n the part of the usually thorough and rigorous Krauts.)
I would actually call your plan a good idea assuming you don't mind the loo k - as long as you change the red tape above the windshield to white or amb er.
nate
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I've always made sure all my stuff reflects. Trailers, boats, cars and trucks, campers, from all angles. I actually put red tape on the side of my truck, because the red matches my red truck, and the truck is not very visible from the side at night. Front red bumper too. I too make sure there is a reflector inside doors or tape. Some vehicles come with the reflector. I know of no law with tape, only lighted indicators. Bicycles should have standard reflectors, no extra tape needed, regardless of having lighted indicators.
Greg
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On 10/17/14, 3:16 AM, gregz wrote:

A red truck? And you haven't been arrested? I've read somewhere that only gas cans can legally be red! :)
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On 10/15/2014 9:58 PM, N8N wrote:

Except for the amber rear turn signals.
I would assume the same would be true for retroreflective sheeting. If nothing else, it's a spectacularly bad idea, as it gives a conflicting message to other road users - red indicates the rear of a vehicle, therefore it ought to be moving away from the viewer, but in reality it's the front and it's not.

Green is for emergency medical personnel, at least in CT
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On Wednesday, October 15, 2014 10:58:48 PM UTC-4, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

those are allowed (ought to be mandated) what I meant was that white and amber are the only colors allowed to be forward-facing.

I haven't seen that here (NoVA/DC area) but there's a good example of why just picking a color that isn't used in your area is a bad idea.
nate
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On 10/15/14, 10:58 PM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

That's not what Connecticut Statutes, Chapter 246, Section 14-96g says.
It has 5 paragraphs. A and B are about marker lamps, marker reflectors, clearance lamps, identification lamps. A says the ones on the front half must be amber. B says the ones on the back half must be red. E says failure to have and mount these required lamps and reflectors shall be an infraction.
C is the only paragraph that prohibits some lights or reflectors. It says all lights and reflectors on the rear of a vehicle must be red except signal lights, including brake lights, which can be red, amber, or yellow (yellow brake lights!); license plate lights, which must be white: and backup lights, which must be white or amber.
In many states, license plates seem to use prismatic sheeting. If Connecticut does, and it's not red, they violate Connecticut statutes.
Paragraph B contains a sentence that's out of place because it's an exception to C. A vehicle owned by a government agency and engaged in construction or repair, may have red or white reflective sheeting on the rear. Shouldn't this apply to a private contractor doing the same work? What about the trucker who rolls up 95 with the DOT-mandated red-and-white reflective tape on the rear? Does Connecticut throw him in jail?
The sign on the back of slow equipment is framed in a triangle of dark-red DOT retroreflective sheeting, but the inner triangle isn't the same color; it's typically a shade of orange. One might think this section outlaws such signs, but as long as the inner triangle doesn't meet DOT criteria as a reflector, it doesn't have to be red.
Paragraph D says school buses may be excepted from C, but it's explained elsewhere in the statutes. There are no exceptions for police cars and ambulances. The reason seems clear. As long as they have the proper markers, this section has no restrictions on the color of additional lights, except on the rear.

I used Scotchlite. According to the DOT, retroreflective sheeting must use prismatic reflectors. It's expensive and hard to cut. It reflects 80% of the light back to the source.
Scotchlite is not considered a vehicle reflector because it uses glass beads. It reflects only 30% of the light back to the source. It was developed as a fluorescent tape to make clothing and equipment highly visible at midday, twilight, and night. Besides having far less retroreflectivity than a DOT reflector, it has a different color and a fluorescent appearance at night.

Are you talking about tape or lights? I ran into a legal forum where a college student asked if it was legal to put blue reflective tape on his bike, like cops. The expert lectured him on why trying to look like a cop was a bad hobby, but he said styling his bike with tape was perfectly legal. (I assume it was glass-bead tape.)
Back about 1984, I decided a cowboy hat would be more practical on the farm than the hats I'd been wearing. Chocolate looked like the most practical color. For the six cooler months each year, it kept the bugs, wind, and sun off my face and kept my head warm.
I continued wearing it when I moved to town. I was amazed on several occasions when kids and even adults addressed me as if I were a cop. I'd assure them I was no cop, but they'd persist. I dressed like someone doing chores. The crown had a cattleman's crease. The brim was turned up slightly on the sides. In 30 years, I've never had it cleaned. The only similarity was that police in the area wear chocolate felt hats with 4" brims.
It seems some people believe brown is legally reserved for police hats.
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On 10/15/14, 9:58 PM, N8N wrote:

Wow, 27,000 words. Apparently it's manufacturing specs. I read it and couldn't find what you were talking about. So I searched for "red," 44 times. It says what must be red. I searched for "not," 201 times. It doesn't prohibit red anywhere.
When "clare" said it was ILLEGAL, I googled. People have asked about putting reflective tape on cars and bikes. The only restrictions on reflective tape that people have found are state laws regarding trucks and trailers. I can see that. If I came over a rise and thought I saw the back of a truck, I'd hate to find out too late that it was the side of the truck crosswise on the road.
I didn't have reflectivity in mind when I applied the tape, but I was glad when I saw it. At night, I didn't want oncoming traffic to wonder if I was a one-eyed car. No car would have a reflective stripe the width of a man's shoulders, 16 inches above a headlight. It gives the immediate impression of a rider in a jacket with a reflective band.
Because it doesn't resemble the rear of a vehicle, it never occurred to me that the tape is a different color. I checked tonight. With the bike on its center stand, the stripe is visible above the roof of my car. Red goes from 620-750 nm. I'd say the car reflectors were around 725 - deep red. I'd say the tape was around 675 - red with an orange hue. By day or night, it has a day-glow effect, much brighter than the tape that marks the rear of a trailer. I've used that tape to mark tool handles I want to spot 100 yards away in brush, day or night.
There aren't many sidewalks around here. If I'm walking on the road, I watch and listen for cars and step off the road if there could be a problem. As a driver, I like to be aware of pedestrians well in advance; so at night I do drivers a favor by wearing light pants.
The road past my house has a 20 mph limit, although I think 35 would be perfectly safe. A neighbor would drive a lot faster, maybe 50 or 60. At that speed, he was betting the unexpected wouldn't happen. He regularly ran the blind stop sign by my house without even slowing much.
One night I wore dark pants because all my light ones were awaiting washing. I heard him about 400 yards behind me. As any vehicle was pretty much out of control with him at the wheel, I walked 6 feet from the pavement, on mowed grass. When he passed, a stop sign and street light were 5 yards ahead of me. He hardly slowed.
He parked in his driveway and rushed back to point out my fault: he hadn't seen me because I was wearing dark pants. I didn't point out that as long as he didn't veer 6 feet off the road, I'd been in no danger. I didn't point out that children and pets may be harder to see than a man under a street light at a stop sign. As a devout Christian, he lived in a special glow from which he perceived sin in others.
Neither he, nor any other Christian neighbor, friend, relative, or policeman, ever said there was anything confusing about the red tape at the base of my windshield. When I'd get inspected, mechanics would scratch their head and ask if it was an airplane. A relative once told me I'd embarrassed her when I rode behind her school bus; all the other kids said I looked like another school bus. Nobody has ever remarked on the red tape.
Go ahead, try it! Slap a stripe of red tape across your car, above the windshield and above the back window! When your insurance agent sees it, he'll give you a 90% reduction on liability, collision, and theft insurance! The next time you have to ask mall security where you left your car, they'll be able to tell you immediately!
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On 10/15/2014 1:06 AM, micky wrote:

I know the car you speak of. Go by it today, there's an odor coming from the trunk.
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wrote:

Everywhere - red reflectors and lights are illegal to be shown on the front of ANY vehicle except an emergency vehicle.

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I've lost my car t twice. Once was at Coney Island, when I thought I'd parked on the street 2 blocks from the amusement parks, but it was really 3.
But the first time, I was on a first date with a girl and we went to the ball game at Shea Stadium. So busy thinking about her, maybe, that I didn't pay attention. We had to wait until all the other cars had left to find mine.
Later, she told me she was older than I thought, so I added one year to my age, said I was 27, thinking that would solve the problem. Still later, I found out she was 14 years older than I. I was amazed.
I haven't been in NYC for a few years and I looked her up online. She still in the same n'hood, maybe the same apartment. Hard to believe she's 81 years old now. But I bet she still looks good.
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I don't know why you are so concerned about something that has nothing to do with you and you know nothing about. Jesus! Just call the cops and let them handle it. That's what they get paid to do. Let the man said, if there is nothing suspicious, they won't do anything.

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