Kokua Line

By June Watanabe

Safety decals best stuck
on the bumper

Question: I read in Kokua Line that the safety inspection stickers could be put anywhere on the back of a vehicle, but when I took my car in to have a safety check, they told me that was not true -- that it had to be on the rear bumper. Can you clarify this?

Q: Pertaining to the safety decal on the rear window: if that's the case, how come I had to remove all my decals from the rear window in order to get a safety sticker, according to Jiffy Lube/University?

Answer: It turns out the safety decal, while not expressly forbidden from being placed on the rear window, should be on the right, rear bumper or as close to it as possible.

John Lovstedt, the state Department of Transportation's motor vehicle safety officer, says the rear window is not an "appropriate" location for the decal.

That's even though the administrative rule (Section 19-133.2-2) covering this matter says if the decal cannot be on the "right, most nearly vertical position of the rear bumper," then it can be affixed "on another appropriate place where the sticker can be clearly viewed by a person who is fifty feet behind the vehicle."

David Mau, the city's assistant motor vehicle and licensing administrator, had interpreted that to mean it was therefore not illegal to place it on the rear window (Kokua Line, July 30). He said he was not saying that was a recommended place, merely that placement was not prohibited there.

Lovstedt said the owner of a vehicle would not be cited for having a safety decal on the window. Instead, the safety inspection stations "would get corrected by the county inspectors" if they see it placed in a spot not deemed "appropriate," he said.

A safety inspector would be the one determining where the decal would be placed, since the rule requires the inspector to affix the decals.

If someone does not want the safety decal placed on a painted bumper, normally he or she would mount a bracket just below the rear bumper, then place the decal on the bracket, Lovstedt said.

"If a bracket is not desired, any vertical portion of the vehicle that is close to the right-hand portion of the bumper can be used, provided it is close to where the decal normally would be placed," he said. That's to allow police to quickly find the decal by looking at a precise spot, he said.

Q: A very large tree is growing over a public roadway and it is definitely separating from the hillside. I can't remember the last time a road crew has trimmed it, probably more than five years ago, but should it fall, it would block the only road for our area. What city department do I call to take action before it becomes a disaster?

A: If you're certain the tree is on a city roadway, the Department of Parks and Recreation is the responsible agency. Call either the Parks Department at 971-7151 or the Department of Customer Services at 523-4381.

If it turns out to be along a state road, call the Department of Transportation at 831-6703.

Useful phone numbers

Got a question or complaint?
Call 529-4773, fax 529-4750, or write to Kokua Line,
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210,
Honolulu 96813. As many as possible will be answered.
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