Mayor Cherelle Parker signs new law prohibiting illegally tinted windows on cars parked in Philly [Fox29]

(Originally posted by Fox29 May 1, 2024)

A Northeast Philadelphia City Council member has successfully pushed an ordinance that prohibits the parking of vehicles with illegally tinted windows on city streets.

Rafael Torres has been tinting windows for a decade and has a shop in Kensington. He said motorists tint their windows for, “privacy and to hold the heat from coming into the car.”

Northeast Philadelphia City Council member Mike Driscoll believes not everyone is trying to beat the heat with tinted windows. He sees darker motives.

He said, “the bad guys, the guys engaged in illegal activity–going fast, doing the drifting, they’re tinting their windows so law enforcement, or cameras we have, don’t know who they are.”

Driscoll points to the dark windows in the vehicle used by the alleged suspects in the mass shooting of eight teens in Northeast Philly in March as evidence of the problem.

He’s pushed an ordinance through City Council which makes it illegal to park a vehicle with blacked out windows on city streets.

The state law says cars can have window tint rated at 70 percent VLT or lighter on all side windows of the car and on the rear windshield.

His local ordinance applies the same standard but focuses on parking because the PA Motor Vehicle Code largely limits cities and towns from regulating the operation of vehicles.

Driscoll said, “the law-abiding citizens that may have broken this ordinance have a chance to remedy it, but we’ve got to start somewhere, so we start to warn, then we start to enforce.”

Mayor Cherelle Parker signed the ordinance Wednesday that now allows city officials to issue a violation or warning and later a $100.00 ticket and a possible tow.

State Police say they issued nearly 13,000 warnings for obstructed windows in the last year, while Rafael Torres offers advice to customers if the police approach. Torres said he advises, “they have to lower all four windows make sure they can see inside.”

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