Car Window Tinting Law Affects Travelers, Businesses - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

05/04/05

Car Window Tinting Law Affects Travelers, Businesses

There's a pretty good chance your car windows are tinted, but there are some new rules on the way. And they don't just affect Georgia residents, but anyone driving in or through the Peach State.

Gov. Sonny Perdue signed a new law which says any tint on the windshield or on the two front windows that's darker than 32 percent is illegal, and a misdemeanor. And it doesn't sit well with many tourists.

Ronnie Saence was on his way home to North Carolina when we caught up with him, tinted windows and all. The new law doesn't seem fair to him.

"I think people in Georgia will know about it, but us? We're just visiting the state or coming through," he said. "I don't think it's fair."

And he's not alone. Interstate 95 is always bustling with traffic. And it will remain so, except now with unsuspecting motorists, who don't realize their darkened windows could mean money out of their pockets.

Some motorists say they'll think twice about traveling through Georgia on their next trip. "I'd take another car, I'd get rid of this one," said Charles Spriggs of Johnson City, Tennessee. "Just because of this law."

And this law's not only affecting motorists, but businesses too. The Auto Link is paying close attention to the law. Their business thrives on tinting windows.

"We specify to customers, straight up, that we are not permitted to allow to put on any tint any darker than what the legal limit is," noted owner John Almeida.

Almeida says the rules upset some, so they go elsewhere for darker windows. But he believes the new law will bring him new business. "When they get fined or cited for it, then they'll be wanting to pay us to take it back off and redo it again. So as soon as the law changes, we'll get busy in three or four months."

The law went into effect immediately, but the Georgia State Patrol says it won't actually be enforced until July 1.

Reported by: Melanie Ruberti, mruberti@wtoc.com

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