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Old 11-16-2011, 12:29 PM   #1
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Legality of GPS suction cups, video screens and front-facing cameras

I'm curious. We have been using a suction cup gps in the car in a position where it doesn't block forward vision. In the motor home, we are considering one of those hockey-puck gps units that connect to a video screen via USB. I'm also considering a forward-mounted recording camera. What are the legal issues we face in selecting and using these devices? Thanks for any help!
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Old 11-16-2011, 12:46 PM   #2
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I have had a GPS in front of me while traveling through different states since 06 never pose a problem.
Others have larger units to the left of steering wheel on dash or have place them on passenger side for co-pilot with out a problem from law enforcement.



If you were to put image on a TV screen in front of you or above than you maybe inviting some concern for distraction while driving.
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Old 11-16-2011, 06:07 PM   #3
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The only thing I've ever heard is that in some states it's illegal to stick anything to the inside of the windshield.

Never heard anything about having a GPS or camera adhered to another surface.
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Old 11-17-2011, 12:31 AM   #4
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Inside a windshield is not to be confused with inside top of dash.
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Old 11-17-2011, 06:58 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by rmmpe View Post
The only thing I've ever heard is that in some states it's illegal to stick anything to the inside of the windshield.
Since 99.9% of all autos have rear view mirrors "stuck" to the inside of the windshield, this would prove hard to enforce.....
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Old 11-17-2011, 07:09 AM   #6
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I'm curious. We have been using a suction cup...
We had the same issue, bought a beanbag base somewhere (WalMart?) that has a glossy plate in the middle to which your suction cup attaches. Works like a charm, and can be shifted to optimize visibility or to share with the passenger seat.
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Old 11-17-2011, 07:11 AM   #7
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I can only speak about New Jersey but technically anything that is on the inside or outside of the windshield that creates a view obstruction in the line of sight can be considered a violation for example dice hanging from the rear view mirror, handicapped tags, and even gps's in the main visual area of the driver. Its up to the police officer if he wants to interpret it it as an obstruction. Another reason to get out of the state asap.
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Old 11-17-2011, 07:26 AM   #8
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I can only speak about New Jersey but technically anything that is on the inside or outside of the windshield that creates a view obstruction in the line of sight can be considered a violation for example dice hanging from the rear view mirror, handicapped tags, and even gps's in the main visual area of the driver. Its up to the police officer if he wants to interpret it it as an obstruction. Another reason to get out of the state asap.
We don't need another reason, taxes and auto insurance rates are enough reason but we totally agree with your obstruction description.
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Old 11-17-2011, 07:44 AM   #9
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Haveing been a police officer, I can tell you officers have better things to do than to worry about where RV'ers have placed thier GPS units.
Generaly people in RVs pose a much smaller risk to others saftey than the rest of the general public.
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Old 11-17-2011, 11:08 AM   #10
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A black box on suction cups on the windhield could be identified by an LEO as a speed trap sensor for radar and laser speed guns.

Many of the Eastern Seaboard states ban anything stuck to the windshield unless it's in the tint band at the top or immediately behind the mirror. My NASA-Langley base parking pass had to be out of the driver's line of sight behind the mirror.

I don't think there are any restrictions in the Western states, but I haven't checked.
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Old 11-17-2011, 12:58 PM   #11
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I've heard that California doesn't allow GPSs to be attached to the windshield. Haven't verified this, any response from CA residents or LEOs.
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Old 11-17-2011, 01:05 PM   #12
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I will second the "Anything that obstructs the driver's line of sight" .. Like the Annual Park pass for Michigan State Parks.

When I worked for the State Police our parking permit was stuck to the back side of the mirror where the driver could not even see it.. The only legal parking permit I've ever seen. Seems the department felt it was bad form to stick it on the window where it might be considered illegal.
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Old 11-17-2011, 01:08 PM   #13
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I attached our GPS holder to the side window in front of the drivers door. Its close enough for the driver to reach and it does not restrict any forward viewing.
Very happy with how it works there.
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Old 11-17-2011, 06:34 PM   #14
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Quote:
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I've heard that California doesn't allow GPSs to be attached to the windshield. Haven't verified this, any response from CA residents or LEOs.
Glenn
California allows a GPS to be placed in the lower left corner of the windshield...
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