Each week, Scottsbluff Police Cpl. Krisa Brass will answer questions submitted by Star-Herald readers.

Send questions for consideration to youasked@starherald.com or by leaving your question at 308-632-9057.

Q. Why are local installers allowed to apply too dark of window tints to cars? Nebraska law states “Must allow more than 35% transmission” on front windows and the windshield must not be tinted more than 5 inches from the top of the windshield. And why are the local police not issuing tickets? One local installer has you sign a release to get darker windows. Another has the wrong law hanging up for patrons.

This is an interesting topic. Officers often make traffic stops based on window tint violations, however, I must admit I hadn’t put much thought into the liability on behalf of the actual installation.

Nebraska State Statute says it is unlawful for a driver to operate a motor vehicle on the roadway (a) If the windows in such motor vehicle are tinted so that the driver’s clear view through the windshield or side or rear windows is reduced or the ability to see into the motor vehicle is substantially impaired;

(b) If the windshield has any sun screening material that is not clear and transparent below the AS-1 line or if it has a sun screening material that is red, yellow, or amber in color above the AS-1 line;

(c) If the front side windows have any sun screening or other transparent material that has a luminous reflectance of more than thirty-five percent or has light transmission of less than thirty-five percent;

(d) If the rear window or side windows behind the front seat have sun screening or other transparent material that has a luminous reflectance of more than thirty-five percent or has light transmission of less than twenty percent except for the rear window or side windows behind the front seat on a multipurpose vehicle, van, or bus.

As for the installation, there is a separate statute that states a person who applies the sun screening material in violation of the requirements shall also be guilty of a class III Misdemeanor.

Regarding the local installer who is having people sign the release, he or she is still in violation if he/she installs the illegal sun screening material. Without knowing the “wrong law” hanging at the other place I can’t say much. I would encourage people to do their own research before having tint applied to their windows.

My daughter’s windshield has a large crack across it. I worry about it being a vision obstruction. How do the police determine if a crack is a vision obstruction?

Nebraska State Statute 60-6,256 addresses the obstruction or interference of the operator’s view. The statute specifically references material obstructing the view of the operator through the windshield or preventing the operator from having a clear and full view of the road and traffic.

Like most things, the determination comes down to what is reasonable. If your vehicle sustained heavy damage from hail storms and 90% of the windshield is smashed, it would likely be very difficult to see in and out of, making it an obstruction.

Now, if your windshield has a single crack and does not interfere with seeing in or out of the vehicle, then it shouldn’t be an issue.

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