Saturday, July 03, 2010

USRider criticizes proposed digital license plates


For immediate release

Lexington, KY (June 30, 2010) - Advertising is everywhere these days. Flyers mysteriously appear on your front door as well as your windshield. At the filling station, blaring announcements attempt to entice you to go inside and spend more money. Even in the restroom, ads are strategically placed on the back of the stall doors. Now the California government is seeking to profit off what they consider the next prime piece of real estate for marketing efforts - license plates.

The idea is to show advertising on new digital license plates when a vehicle stops.

Facing $19 billion in debt, California is exploring the option of selling advertising on electronic license plates as a way to generate revenue. 

As reported by, the idea is contained in Senate Bill 1453, which has already passed the state Senate and is now before the Legislature. The proposal by Sen. Curren D. Price Jr. (D-Los Angeles) would give the California Department of Motor Vehicles the authority to investigate the emerging "digital electronic license plate" technology as a viable means for advertising and other communication. The idea is that when a vehicle is stopped for longer than four seconds, the license plate would transform into digital ad-space for which companies would pay to display an ad. 

“This proposal is totally irresponsible on behalf of the California legislature and will only serve to create more distractions and a more dangerous driving environment for drivers who face enough distractions already,” said Mark Cole, managing member for USRider, the national provider of roadside emergency assistance for equestrians.

Statistics show that driving while distracted is a factor in 25 percent of police reported crashes. Driving is an activity that demands close attention. Not only do drivers need to watch what they’re doing, but they also have to keep an eye on other drivers and road conditions.

“We urge the residents of California to contact their legislators and voice opposition to this proposal,” said Cole. “This is a no-brainer: drivers should be looking at the road - NOT at an advertisement on another vehicle's license plate.”
USRider provides roadside assistance and towing services along with other travel-related benefits to its members through the Equestrian Motor Plan. It includes standard features such as flat-tire repair, battery assistance and lockout services, plus towing up to 100 miles and roadside repairs for tow vehicles and trailers with horses, emergency stabling, veterinary referrals and more. For more information about the USRider Equestrian Motor Plan, visit online or call (800) 844-1409.

For additional safety tips, visit the Equine Travel Safety Area on the USRider website at

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