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View Full Version : Handicap Hang-Tag Misuse



headonstraight
05-05-2011, 06:13 PM
How many officers here actively enforce handicap hang-tag misuse?

From what I can tell, the person's name is written on the tag, so if you were to check their ID it'd be pretty simple to tell if they are using their grandma's tag, right?

Has anyone found offenders who have figured out ways around the regulations as far as obtaining a legitimate hang-tag issued to them without actually being handicapped?

Just something that I've gotten more and more curious about as I've seen more folks abusing them.

rfburns
05-05-2011, 09:27 PM
I enforce those in department store parking lots when I have a few free minutes. I issue a lot more than other officers because instead of looking for the handicap placard hanging from the rear view mirror, I'll actually get out (or use binos) and check the expiration date. Some placards get used LOOOONG after they've expired.

aircop26
05-05-2011, 11:28 PM
How many officers here actively enforce handicap hang-tag misuse?

From what I can tell, the person's name is written on the tag, so if you were to check their ID it'd be pretty simple to tell if they are using their grandma's tag, right?

Has anyone found offenders who have figured out ways around the regulations as far as obtaining a legitimate hang-tag issued to them without actually being handicapped?

Just something that I've gotten more and more curious about as I've seen more folks abusing them.

I'm sorry I mis-read the thread at first, I thought do I write the idiots who leave the handicap placard hanging from the mirrors. That really annoys me. It says clearly "take down when driving", but no the blue hairs leave it up like "a badge of honor". Got love the folks with handicap placards who think it authorizes them to park in the loading area of the handicap stall. :rolleyes:

Jiu-Jitsu Cop
05-05-2011, 11:30 PM
In California there is no name on the placard which ishung from the rearview mirror. There is a number on it which can be run in the system to find out who the placard is issued to. I have written them in the past.

Phouse70
05-05-2011, 11:34 PM
Our big issue is people forgetting to put em up.

We write 'em then find out a week later we wrote a 90 year old lady with a walker, so we pretend like it was our fault.

I remind 'em all I want, but I'll keep biting my tongue when the Sgt gives me a talk... its part of the routine!

jannino
05-05-2011, 11:36 PM
Has anyone found offenders who have figured out ways around the regulations as far as obtaining a legitimate hang-tag issued to them without actually being handicapped?

Just something that I've gotten more and more curious about as I've seen more folks abusing them.

My son had one when he was first born. If an officer were to ask why we had it, I would tell him to pound sand. There is absolutely no reason why you should ask or why you should be told. You have zero authority to question why one was issued. I completely understand verifying the person and dates though.

L-1
05-05-2011, 11:56 PM
Has anyone found offenders who have figured out ways around the regulations as far as obtaining a legitimate hang-tag issued to them without actually being handicapped?

Its not practical in California. Out here you doctor merely needs to satisfy DMV that you meet one of the many qualifying medical criteria. If he does, DMV gives you the placard.

Your medical information is confidential. Law enforcement has no access to it and cannot question you about your condition as they are not empowered or qualified to pass medical judgment over you degree of disability or whether you meet state qualifications for the placard.

An occasional problem comes up when a "good citizen" decides someone doesn't "look handicapped enough" to be issued a placard and starts a urinating contest over them having one. In California, you can qualify for a placard if you have heart, circulatory or lung disease, or any type of impaired mobility, which is not defined. Difficulty walking long distances would qualify as impaired mobility. As a result, many "normal looking" people have them.

FĂ«anor
05-06-2011, 12:57 AM
Gotta agree, if they were issued a placard they are not an offender. A person could be in a condition where they can walk normally without pain but it is unhealthy because they are still healing from a recent surgery, an old wound, etc.

Ramblinman
05-06-2011, 01:45 AM
In Tennessee the placards have a number to run like a registration. It is also illegal to pretend to be handicapped when you are not (Criminal Impersonation) but it is opening a can of worms to try and enforce that part of the law.

Aerohead
05-06-2011, 01:54 AM
One of my biggest pet peeves is people who park in handicap spots who aren't handicapped because my mom is handicapped and uses a walker - I used to write tickets for handicap violations like crazy when I was a security police officer (used to LOVE the court time too!) - I especially looked hard for obvious abuse of handicap permits - in Michigan (at least prior to 2006 - not sure now) the person's driver's license number was written on the handicap permit so you could verify who the permit was issued to and therefore who was supposed to be using it - whenever I would see an obvious non-handicapped person using one (like a car load of teenagers), I'd wait for them to come out to the car, run them, run the permit, then write them a ticket for the handicap violation and confiscate the permit - same goes for if I saw them getting into the car...used to get a lot of warrant arrests that way too (shocking) and a few recovered stolen cars...

Now it's kind of a nuisance because by the time I get the call and have someone available to send out the "violator" is usually gone...or the caller doesn't take the extra 2 seconds to look inside and see the permit sitting between the seats or on the dashboard...or that they have a handicap permit sticker on the license plate...

FromOhio
05-06-2011, 02:42 AM
I see a lot of sports cars with them around here. gtr-35's, , ferrari's, porsche's, etc. The person is always some young rich dude. My guess is that they don't want to park in the back of the parking lot where it's not in view of the front of the store, and that they feel like they're better than everyone else and can just park up front. Handicapped spaces should ONLY be used for people who can't walk. I don't see any other excuse as to why a person should have one. Argue about it with me all you want, but I don't really care.

HI629
05-06-2011, 03:45 AM
I used to love it when I was writing a violation and the offender says something stupid like "I know it's my mom's card and I'm not supposed to use it, but there was no more parking stalls." Having had to transport an elderly grandmother to the drug store to get her medicine, grocery shopping, doctor's office, etc., and helping drive my friends sick aunt to her twice weekly dialysis treatments, I've come to appreciate the handicapped parking stalls. It burns me to see folks misusing the stalls and parking there when they're not supposed to.

GreenZone09
05-06-2011, 04:29 AM
My son had one when he was first born. If an officer were to ask why we had it, I would tell him to pound sand. There is absolutely no reason why you should ask or why you should be told. You have zero authority to question why one was issued. I completely understand verifying the person and dates though.

Simmer down, Sparky!

FromOhio
05-06-2011, 04:37 AM
I've come to appreciate the handicapped parking stalls. It burns me to see folks misusing the stalls and parking there when they're not supposed to.

My grandma has super bad arthritus. Me and my mom parked in a handicapped spot because my grandma can barely walk far (she has a card). Some old guy seen that me and my mom could walk fine and completely bitched us out saying that because we can walk fine we should drop her off at the door and park somewhere else. This was a guy who could walk completely fine also, didn't have a handicapped sticker, and was parking in a handicapped spot for himself. I was young and clueless, but if someone said that to me now while I'm taking my grandma to the store, and they're using up a space she actually needs, they would have some new problems to deal with.

HI629
05-06-2011, 05:29 AM
My grandma has super bad arthritus. Me and my mom parked in a handicapped spot because my grandma can barely walk far (she has a card). Some old guy seen that me and my mom could walk fine and completely bitched us out saying that because we can walk fine we should drop her off at the door and park somewhere else. This was a guy who could walk completely fine also, didn't have a handicapped sticker, and was parking in a handicapped spot for himself. I was young and clueless, but if someone said that to me now while I'm taking my grandma to the store, and they're using up a space she actually needs, they would have some new problems to deal with.


What a DB. I've seen folks pull in to the last handicapped parking stall and not have special plates or a place card. When I'm not in a hurry or don't have my family with me, I'll make a comment like "I hope you have a place card for your vehicle. Hate to see you return to your vehicle to be greeted by a $500 citation." Most times they move their vehicle, couple of times they make stupid comments, other times they ignore me. In any case, I'll call it in to the appropriate LE agency (military or civilian) and let them deal with it. Having seen a fair number of elderly folks walking in the rain or snow (who do have a place card or appropriate license plates) because they had to park several rows back because of DBs' who misuse the stalls motivates me to call them in whenever possible. Wouldn't want my grandmother or grandfather to be at risk of pneumonia due to the selfish acts of others.

chad7613
05-06-2011, 09:26 AM
I love seeing people park in the HC spaces when they aren't supposed to when I'm working. Most of the parking lots I end up in have a tow company and the drivers are very good at sitting in the area waiting for a call. When the DB walks out and notices their car is gone they always come up and say 'hey my car was stolen'. My response is 'no it wasn't, you parked in a handicapped space so your car was towed.' I really like finding them on friday nights / saturday's because the tow company won't release the cars until monday morning which means extra storage fees.

willbird
05-06-2011, 09:34 AM
Local McDonalds tells drive through customers to pull ahead and park in the handicapped spot. Manager says is is HIS parking lot and he will decide who gets to park there :-).

chad7613
05-06-2011, 09:39 AM
Local McDonalds tells drive through customers to pull ahead and park in the handicapped spot. Manager says is is HIS parking lot and he will decide who gets to park there :-).

Wow, If I were a handicapped person I would be all over his butt complaining and even calling corporate office to complain. Who knows, I might end up with free Micky D's for a while. :D

willbird
05-06-2011, 09:45 AM
Wow, If I were a handicapped person I would be all over his butt complaining and even calling corporate office to complain. Who knows, I might end up with free Micky D's for a while. :D

Well the handicapped spots there never get used, more or less you would have to drive all the way around the building, and park near the parking lot exit. There is a good walkway up to the building from there, etc...but most folks do not remember they are there if I had to guess ?

mp1161
05-06-2011, 09:54 AM
Wow, If I were a handicapped person I would be all over his butt complaining and even calling corporate office to complain. Who knows, I might end up with free Micky D's for a while. :D

You eat free Micky D's for a while you just might end up handicapped!

btfp
05-06-2011, 10:23 AM
This is a huge pet peeve of mine. If i see it i write it. Now, when working i have on a very few occasions, witnessed a clearly disabled person park in a reg spot while waiting for HP tag or placard. You know what I tell them to park in the spot and not worry about it. I am the one enforcing it. i am not writing it.
I HATE kids that park in a HP zone cause they have grandpops car or whatever. If they are chauffeuring grandpop that is a different story. There is a possibility grandpop cannot stand for a long time and I really don't want grandpop standing alone while junior retrieves the vehicle from the lot.

just joe
05-06-2011, 10:28 AM
No names on placards in Ohio. For me, I wrote a lot more people without a placard displayed than improper use of an issued placard.

Carbonfiberfoot
05-06-2011, 11:50 AM
I see a lot of sports cars with them around here. gtr-35's, , ferrari's, porsche's, etc. The person is always some young rich dude. My guess is that they don't want to park in the back of the parking lot where it's not in view of the front of the store, and that they feel like they're better than everyone else and can just park up front. Handicapped spaces should ONLY be used for people who can't walk. I don't see any other excuse as to why a person should have one. Argue about it with me all you want, but I don't really care.

Settlement money...

http://www.fieldslawfirmllc.com/images/slip-fall.jpg

HI629
05-06-2011, 01:46 PM
Local McDonalds tells drive through customers to pull ahead and park in the handicapped spot. Manager says is is HIS parking lot and he will decide who gets to park there :-).

In some jurisdictions (like HI), state law allows enforcement on public AND private property if the lot is in plain view. My buddy in Maui writes them all the time and has found a few stolen cars that way.

Krell
05-06-2011, 07:02 PM
SC recently remade their placards. Now they have pictures on them, plus there's a separate category for temporarily disabled (4 months to 1 year) which is burgundy instead of blue.

http://www.scdmvonline.com/DMVNew/default.aspx?n=disabled_placards_and_plates

deputy x 2
05-06-2011, 07:06 PM
Handicap placards/ parking including blocking the ramp was my pet peeve!

The misuse of them is horrible! They apparently give em out with WIC coupons!

L-1
05-06-2011, 07:21 PM
Handicap placards/ parking including blocking the ramp was my pet peeve!

The misuse of them is horrible! They apparently give em out with WIC coupons!

I don't know that its misuse as much as the qualification rules have become very liberal.

A couple of years ago an article came out saying one in every six California drivers had a handicapped placard. If further said their use had become so prevalent that municipal parking revenues had been severely cut, necessitating a rise in parking meter prices to make up the difference.

It went on to say that placard use was adversely affecting the business economy, because employees in downtown business districts were using their placards to park all day in front of their employer's stores. Because employees were now taking up metered spaces that usually have time limits, there was no turnover in parking spaces for customers, and people are going elsewhere to shop, severely reducing spending. Cumulatively, this harm the baseness economy, which cost jobs and lowered income from business taxes.

deputy x 2
05-06-2011, 07:31 PM
Well I think both....what's easier to get a Medical MJ card or a placard?

Yeppers......no one in SF or OAK pays for their parking meter.

flash40
05-06-2011, 08:02 PM
Abuse of permits is very common in my area, despite the $500 fine. I can't stand the laziness, when there is ample legal parking usually less than 50 feet away.

When I have time, I check the lots outside the "big-box" stores and get out of the car to take a closer look. I often find long expired permits, permits face down on the dash so expiration isn't visible, laminated color copies/fakes, and of course, no permits at all.

There's nothing better than having the driver RUN up yelling, "That's my car!" while I'm taking a look.

Conversation usually goes like this:

Me: "Well, is that your placard? (yes) Ok, do you have your matching handicapped ID with you?".....

"Well, it's my grandmas...I thought I could use it."

Idiots.

Aerohead
05-07-2011, 12:43 PM
Abuse of permits is very common in my area, despite the $500 fine. I can't stand the laziness, when there is ample legal parking usually less than 50 feet away.

When I have time, I check the lots outside the "big-box" stores and get out of the car to take a closer look. I often find long expired permits, permits face down on the dash so expiration isn't visible, laminated color copies/fakes, and of course, no permits at all.

There's nothing better than having the driver RUN up yelling, "That's my car!" while I'm taking a look.

Conversation usually goes like this:

Me: "Well, is that your placard? (yes) Ok, do you have your matching handicapped ID with you?".....

"Well, it's my grandmas...I thought I could use it."

Idiots.

My feeling was - if it was face down, etc. - and it appeared they were trying to hide their misuse - I 99.9% of the time wrote it anyway (if the registered owner was born in the early 1900's or other possible signs of a valid permit user then no) - if it's a good permit then the judge would always void the ticket if they took it to court or another officer would void the ticket on the spot - no harm, no foul...the court of the city we worked in was always good about us voiding tickets as long as we just typed out a quick paragraph and attached it to the voided out tickets...but I always took the extra 20 seconds and looked inside of the vehicle and checked to see if it was above the visor or sticking out between the seats or what not...it always amazed me how many other officers would just write a ticket and not even bother getting out to check first...are the permits supposed to be hung from the rearview mirror? Yes...but all they have to do is present the valid permit to have the ticket voided anyway...takes longer to write the damn thing than it does to check the car...

headonstraight
05-07-2011, 02:24 PM
My son had one when he was first born. If an officer were to ask why we had it, I would tell him to pound sand. There is absolutely no reason why you should ask or why you should be told. You have zero authority to question why one was issued. I completely understand verifying the person and dates though.

OK, not really what I was trying to get at, but ok...

towguy
05-07-2011, 02:33 PM
if it makes anyone feel better I have towed more than one car from a handicap spot (and they weren't handicapped). and I can agree 110% with the officers on here, you hear some of the dumbest excuses from the idiots that park there. come to think of it, its almost the same excuses you hear when they park in front of fire hydrants.

ibdrago
05-07-2011, 03:22 PM
if it makes anyone feel better I have towed more than one car from a handicap spot (and they weren't handicapped). and I can agree 110% with the officers on here, you hear some of the dumbest excuses from the idiots that park there. come to think of it, its almost the same excuses you hear when they park in front of fire hydrants.

The excuses like "I'm not parked - I'm waiting"? or "I was only there for a minute" are really common. BIG peeve of mine too! I write 'em whenever I can (after I check the visor, between the seats and the map pockets of course) kinda hard to commit to the time to sit and see if the placard actually belongs to someone in the car, but I've done it.

jcioccke
05-07-2011, 03:58 PM
Handicap placards/ parking including blocking the ramp was my pet peeve!

The misuse of them is horrible! They apparently give em out with WIC coupons!

+1

Sad thing the other day I saw someone use one at the GYM I couldn't believe it. I debated having a conversation with the guy (yes he runs on the treadmill) but thought better of it.

orlandofed5-0
05-08-2011, 02:49 AM
I sometimes park in handicapped spaces while handicapped people make handicapped faces....

jannino
05-09-2011, 01:33 AM
OK, not really what I was trying to get at, but ok...

Sorry about that. For some reason I read it that you actually asked in attempt to enforce it. I will put the crack pipe down.

chad7613
05-10-2011, 05:56 AM
Sorry about that. For some reason I read it that you actually asked in attempt to enforce it. I will put the crack pipe down.

You don't have to put the crack pipe down, I find crackheads entertaining when I'm bored lol. I'm not calling you a crackhead btw.

chad7613
05-10-2011, 05:59 AM
You eat free Micky D's for a while you just might end up handicapped!

Eh, prolly but hey I'm still kinda young so I gots me some time to enjoy it before I need to reall watch what I eat lol.

patrick_leo
05-10-2011, 08:07 AM
When I was enforcing parking violations years ago, one of my usual comments to the drivers abusing the handicap spots was to tell them that these spots were for physically handicapped drivers only not the mentally ones.