Photo enforcement has one message for reckless drivers: you can run, but you can't hide. No matter how quickly you race past a sensor, your license plate will be photographed and you'd eventually be on the receiving end of a $100 fine.
Enterprising drivers, however, have latched onto a clever solution. Their retort to the challenge photo enforcement has issued? Catch me if you can.
Drivers have taken to using a variety of means to elude photo enforcers. One of these is the license plate spray.
License Plate Spray: Ancestor
Before license plate sprays, there were license plate covers. License plate covers deflect light from cameras, making plates unreadable. Manufacturers claim this light deflection mechanism makes it impossible to make out license plates from the side and the top. Because license plate covers come cheaply, many bought them. It was not long before authorities caught on. Some states quickly banned the use of license plate covers.
License Plate Spray: How Does It Work?
License plate spray came after the license plate cover. Like its ancestor, it also relies on the reflective property of a license plate's lettering. Photo radars utilize a strong flash to photograph cars' license plates as these vehicles speed by. License plate sprays flash this light back to the camera. The result is a picture made unreadable by over-exposure.
Advantages of Using License Plate Spray
To supporters, the license plate spray is one of the hottest inventions since sliced bread. They encourage its wide use for the following reasons:
A can costs somewhere between $19 to $25.
It's easy to apply.
All you have to do is spray license plate spray on your license plate. Then, you wait for it to dry.
It reflects photo radar flash, thereby saving you from a costly and undeserved ticket.
It can be used many times.
One can may be used to spray as many as four license plates.
One application is good for life.
Once you apply license plate spray on your license plate, there's no need to reapply it. It will not wash off or fade.
Disadvantages of License Plate Spray
Its effectiveness is still under debate.
Some claim it works; others say it doesn't. It's unclear which side is telling the truth. What is clear as daylight, however, is the fact that license plate sprays are selling faster than law enforcers could blink.
It may be responsible for negative behavior modification.
Some believe license plate sprays will cause drivers to be cocky. Because they no longer fear legal consequences of their actions, they would exceed the speed limit and run over red lights whenever they feel like doing so.
Most states do not expressly prohibit the use of license plate spray. What they prohibit is obstructing license plates from human view. Manufacturers of license plate sprays argue that spraying license plates with a high-gloss finish is not illegal because the writing on the plates would still be visible to the human eye. It is only a photo radar camera that cannot see them.
To spray or not to spray? That is the question. No matter how we answer it, though, one thing is clear. The human race has made so many technological advancements anything is possible - even foiling wireless eyes.