TCD Officers Checking For Illegal Licence Plates

October 8, 2018 | 34 Comments

The Transport Control Department [TCD] is reminding the public of licence plate guidelines after “an increase in personalized licence plates which are not in compliance with the legal plate specifications”.

A spokesperson said, “The Transport Control Department [TCD] is reminding the public of the motor vehicle licence plate guidelines outlined in the Motor Car [Examination, Licensing and Registration] Regulations 1952.

“The TCD has reported an increase in personalized licence plates which are not in compliance with the legal plate specifications set out in the official specifications.

“In most instances, offenders were not aware of the specifications. In other cases, offenders were aware of specifications and changed their licence plate to meet the legal criteria in order to pass their vehicle inspection test, after which, they replaced the plate with an illegal, self-expression licence plate.

“Some self-expression licence plates contain cursive lettering and/or additional pictures and objects making them illegible or difficult to read. These licence plates are a matter of concern for the TCD as they present a safety hazard and are ultimately not in compliance with the law.

“As a matter of road safety, it is imperative that all motorists ensure they are in compliance with the following:

  • All motor vehicle licence plates must have white reflective background with black markings. This excludes loaner vehicle licence plates which have a yellow background with black markings and Rental Motor Cars which have a white reflective background and red markings.
  • All letters or figures on licence plates should be of uniform size.
    • Letters and figures should be seven-sixteenths of an inch broad and the total width of the space taken by any letter or figure, at least one and seven-sixteenth inches [Schedule, Section 2[4]b].
    • The space between any two letters or any two figures shall be three-eighths of an inch, and the space between figures shall be one and five-eighths inches [Schedule, Section 2[4]d].
    • There shall be a margin, between the nearest part of any letter or figure and the top, bottom or sides of the plate, of at least half an inch [Schedule, Section 2[4]e].
  • No other figures or letters and no design, ornamentation or article shall be placed near to, over or upon any letters or figures on the licence plate.
  • Only Personalized licence plates issued by the Transport Control Department are to be affixed to vehicles.

“These guidelines are set forth as a matter of public safety.

“TCD Traffic Officers will be out conducting routine checks to ensure motorists are in compliance with these regulations.

“For additional information please contact the Transport Control Department at 292-1271.”

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  1. Toodle-oo says:

    *Only Personalized licence plates issued by the Transport Control Department are to be affixed to vehicles.*

    So in other words there are only TWO styles of legal plates.
    The standard font white background plate that the car comes from the dealer with and the ‘personalized’ plate issued by TCD for an additional fee with the blue map of Bermuda and the words ‘Bermuda is another world’ on it. NOTHING else !
    How all these sign/plate makers have been taking people’s money knowing what they have been doing all along is not legal is beyond me.

    It’s incredible that we’ve had this free for all where people have plates that aren’t just an expression of creativity , it appears that they’re deliberately illegible and they will not pass TCD either.
    And let’s not overlook some bikes that have their own version of same as well .

    • Eye 4 and Eye says:

      Don’t need to look very hard or long? Start in the TCD parrking lot.

      Seriously though. Is this the biggest thereat to the transportation department. What about all the abandoned cars?

      How they can drive past them and pretend they don’t see them amazes me.

      For example Bishop Spenser area. Bakery Lane accross from Dandytown field. Parsons Road. Let’s start there. Stop picking on people because the windows have tint, have rims, have plates made by someone else. As long as the plates match the car, are easy read is it that big of a deal? Is that what they think is priority one?

      • JohnBoy says:

        Why not be a law-abiding citizen instead.

      • 6mbs says:

        How about TCD worry about some of these smokey rust bucket cars, trucks, taxis and bikes that shouldn’t be on the road but somehow are. Or these elderly folks driving below the speed limit and braking everytime a car is coming in the opposite direction. Or people who don’t use indicators, or people who don’t know how to even use indicators at round abouts to leave you guessing if they are actually turning or going straight but have on their indicators anyway. Those are a bigger risk of public safety than a flipping license plate that is still legible but with added ‘pictures’.

        Or how about they acknowledge their screw up when they mixed up the wording for car plates that said black background with white lettering…..

        • DFam says:

          Agreed, TCD Emissions and BPS needs to address the exhaust pollution. Driving behind buses, rental bikes and some cars is a major health hazard to your lungs. Stop passing these vehicles or ticket them when you see them on the road.

          • Toodle-oo says:

            The issue with local emission control testing is that no standard has ever been published . I’ve never heard of anyone being failed yet . But still , as in the old days, TCD will flunk a car that is smoking excessively .
            As a matter of fact , I’ve probably seen only one car smoking like crazy in the last 3 years , if that.
            The rental bikes are two strokes so them smoking is a function of how they perform normally . Eventually there will be no more as virtually all of the privately registered motorcycles are all 4 strokes now too.
            Now the diesel issue ! Oh yeah , it’s very hard to come across a properly set up diesel vehicle in Bermuda .
            Remember , the whole emissions testing facility was nothing more than a F&F money grab brought to you by none other than ……

            • Backa Town Driva says:

              So why are the Bermuda Taxpayers Paying to run the Bermuda Emissions Testing when they are not now, or ever have tested for Emissions.

              It was something that was forced on us by the PLP government and is privately owned. It costs us millions per year and they don’t even do what the name implies.

              In many states like Atlanta garages or gas stations have small testing machines that are calibrated by the government so people can get their emissions test when they get there oil changed and brakes tested.

              Instead we “created” a whole business for someone else that takes money out of our pockets and does not even do what the name implies and what they are paid to do!

    • Herman says:

      They should start checking the police parkinglot.

    • Whistling Frog says:

      A car detailing shop will give you what you ask for. It’s a business offered in a democratic society. It’s a crying shame we pay a police service all this money to drive around in air conditioned vehicles day in and day out while their eyes are wide shot…

      • Toodle-oo says:

        I could never offer a service to anyone knowing that it broke any rules or laws.
        It’s highly unlikely these plate makers are unaware of the laws pertaining to license plates even though I know for a fact that very few members of the public know that they can’t have any style plate they want. So the plate makers should hand the money back ! because they know the vehicle will not pass TCD with them on.

        • Backa Town Driva says:

          Stores sell Rizlas and rolling tobacco and we all know what 99% of that is used for?

          Hardware stores sell Limo tint

          Signmakers make signs that have letters that are too big according to the law.

          I see stores that have Neon signs and that is against the law.

          Just because something is a law does not mean it is a good idea or necessary anymore! Do you really want the police spending their time looking at the font on the plate, the percentage of tint on your windows or would you rather they spend their time chasing real crimes.

          • Toodle-oo says:

            Rizzlas and loose tobacco are legal.
            It’s not illegal to sell window tint as long as it still allows the car it’s installed on to pass the ‘light transmission test’.
            Sign makers know very well what the laws are , and if they go outside of the boundaries the person they made the sign for has to remove it and get one that conforms.
            Neon signs are legal only if they’re in a place in the shop where they can not be seen from outside of the premises.
            Yes I want the license plates to conform to a standard that we ALL must abide by. One that doesn’t allow people who think they are special to put a deliberately illegible plate on their car or bike.
            They’re all in our face anyway so it’s no extra effort on the police’s part to nick the offenders.
            This rock is in the mess that it is now because , for political reasons , all sorts of little infractions were allowed to slide. Now people think it’s their right to make any and large infractions because no-one ever enforced the small stuff.
            btw , this morning I saw two cars that for long had their own illegal plates now sporting the legal personalized plate . So good ! The word is getting out slowly .

  2. Truth is killin' me... says:

    About time…for a minute I thought TCD had changed the law. I’ve seen some stupid personalized plates. Give them tickets and you’ll pay of public debt in no time. Also what’s up with scratching up the bike plates so you can’t even see the green numbers. Shouldn’t the Police be checking this on stops?

  3. catedra says:

    And those motorcycles who clearly have the baffles removed so the rider can pretend that he isn’t actually riding a chicken chaser, or the bikes with a red front light, or the cars/bikes/trucks whose indicators are clearly faulty because they don’t work……….

  4. JohnBoy says:

    It’s about time they said something about this. It has really gotten out of hand but as always you wait for something to get to the extreme stage and then try to reign it it. By then it’s a bit late though.

  5. PANGAEA says:

    Just go to show that they still have a choke hold on the voting driving public.
    You also, do not need a plate on the front of todays cars and other vehicles.

  6. DB says:

    How is this a mtter of public safety !?!?!?!?

    • Toodle-oo says:

      Hit and run , car speeds away and you can’t make out the number .

  7. BoB says:

    What all this time people have these plates that are not correct and NOW, TCD want to chase them down.. The Government just moves slow… But give them a fine on the spot.. and if not paid . not car registered for the road.

    • Toodle-oo says:

      In a way it’s a bit unfair to criticize TCD as the vehicles will fail with these plates on them. So , no-one is showing up at TCD to be tested with them on, they put them on after the car/bike has passed its test. Just like guys quieten their bikes for testing then put the illegal loud exhausts on them afterwards.
      IMO it’s up to the police to monitor the situation as they’re on the road all day and become the mobile eyes/ears for TCD

  8. Watcher says:

    It’s probably been about a year since I first started noticing a car that had a black license plate with white lettering almost every day when driving into town. Before long there were a few more and even a taxi. One day I ran into a couple of police officers in Hamilton and asked them what was up with these “new” license plates and if the law had changed. A senior officer amongst them hadn’t a clue what I was talking about, and one of the others confirmed that there were quite a few vehicles with these plates. Now I see them every day, so the police must see them too, yet the numbers continue to grow. I guess it’s true that laws are meant to be broken!!

  9. St.George's Gal says:

    About time TCD do their job. Some of the plates are very difficult to read and in some instances, near illegible. Post a notice in the paper and online. Anyone found using the illegal plates after that receive a fine.

  10. frank says:

    first get rid of the personalized plates cause in case of and accident or hit and run no one can remember the name this was an American thing that the doctor wanted.
    the latest new trend is white numbers on a black background
    also the police need to clap down on people driving with fog light instead of head lights and stop the stupid trend of red lights in the front of vehicles

  11. question says:

    Shouldn’t they have been enforcing this all along?

  12. PANGAEA says:

    This is all about the old guard leglislative control and dictatorship.

    Is this the revenue they are after.

    With all the fatalities it looks like restrictive seat belts and crash hemets could be contributing to the dilemma , giving a false sence of security, the helmet for some inspires the desire to race

    Getting caught in a car fire you have no chance wearing a belt which also tests the bonds of freedom of movement while driving, again, giving a false sence of security.

    The bike helmet conseals identity, restricts sight and sounds both of the above devices may contribute to many mis adventures .

    The motorist choices should be optional.

    We are not children !

  13. James says:

    No other country lets you mess with plates.
    Wait until you have been knocked down and cannot read the plate of the vehicle that hit you. In the UK there are strict rules and regulations about how plates are made. Without the vehicle licence and ID they wont even make them.
    Speed cameras would not be able to read half these plates.
    I thought we were getting them one day.
    Police should be policing this. They are committing an offence on a road.
    That is the job of the Police not TCD

  14. Zo Zo says:

    Just an fyi… the official tcd plates don’t last. I had mine for only a year before the black paint on the numbers peeled away & I’ve had to keep repainting the black on myself. I’ve seen plenty other plates peeling as well. May be a reason why more people are getting the other plastic plates.

  15. Dread says:

    My plate says “titty milk”

  16. Really says:

    Why would you want a personalized license plate, they just make you look idiotic, with a touch of look at me, look at me. Grow up!

  17. Y-Gurl says:

    Another police state measure, if the numbers are of the legal height and font what does it matter if there’s a car logo on the side of the plate, typical of government trying to remind the people we are not as free to express ourselves as we think, surely there’s more productive ways for these clowns to spend our tax $ than this, they are clerks and former traffic wardens who have been given a uniform and a ticket book, next to the post office these lot are the most underperforming group, let’s drain the swamp

    • Hmmm says:

      “what does it matter if there’s a car logo on the side of the plate” Because the law states that its not allowed!!!

      This is a step to get license plates standardized (back where they are supposed to be), why.. traffic and speed cameras, to properly read them the plates have to be “cleaned up”

  18. Mumbojumbo says:

    A fine is a tax for doing something wrong.
    A tax is a fine for doing something well.

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