School parking tags


Tommy Sun, Business Manager

Students who park their vehicles at one of the high school’s parking lot are familiar with the yellow parking tags that are required to be hung on the vehicle’s rear view mirror, as failure to do may results in a fine or have the vehicle towed away. On those student parking permits, it’s not hard to spot a line that states the tag has to be removed when vehicle is in motion. However, that is not the case for many students.


“It’s too much of a hassle to take it off and remember to put it back everytime I park. So I just don’t take it off at the first place”, states Callum Revell, a senior who drives to school daily. In fact, it’s a common practice for many students to ignore the warning completely and keep the tag on at all time. Another reason that prevents drivers from removing those tags is the fact the tags does not fit on some cars. Hence one available option for those car owners is to tie the tag to the mirror itself. In this case, it’s even more inconvenient and discouraging for drivers to take the tags on and off regularly. One question that has rose was if there is any consequence for leaving the parking permit on while driving.


Since there is not specific laws in Iowa regarding hanging objects in front of windshields, federal guidelines regarding obstructions of drivers’ view would apply: “Any devices attached to the windshield must be outside of the area that the windshield wipers clear and out of the driver’s view of the roadways, signs and traffic signals.” Again, Iowa laws does not have details on potential fines that come with obstructed view. However, citations are possible if the police officer does deem the driver’s view is obstructed by any object, including the parking permit. Regardless of the laws, its undebatable that the parking permits obstructs the driver’s view in one way or another when it’s hanged on the mirror, and any obstruction could result in tragic accidents.


The fact that parking permits could potentially be obstructing views and be a threat to safety is recognized by many for a long time. Many alternatives have also been introduced. The most popular and easiest one to implement would be stickers that are put on either the edges of the windshield, the back of the rear view mirror or even the bumpers. This alternative reduced the risk of obstructed view while keeping the administration of parking permits just as easy as hanged tags.