As states like Pennsylvania ponder over the changes needed to toughen drunken driving laws, and Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman takes measures to get repeat offenders off the roads, the state of Ohio takes a more visible but different approach to fight repeat drunk driving. The plates, which are yellow in color, have red-lettering on them and were ordered to be issued by judges.
As a result of this overhaul, the number of DUI license plates increased to 10, in , from just 1, in These special plates can be replaced back to regular tags after six months to a year, when the drivers license suspension period is over. The highway patrol tells me these people with the plates drive right down the center of the lane going 55 mph.
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According to some motorists who have to use the plates, the plates are humiliating and caused them to lose their jobs when co-workers and bosses spotted them. This belies the fact that having to carry the plates is an offense simply avoided by choosing not to drink and drive. Between and , the number of scarlet letter plates issued in Ohio jumped from 1, and 10, per Annenberg Classroom.
It was quickly decided that the plates would only become mandatory for second offenses and instances where a driver is twice the legal limit. The plates are generally only carried for the duration of a limited privilege period, which runs between six months to a year.
Are you an Ohio resident looking to avoid having to bear this mark of shame?
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