When you notice good or bad behavior on the road you have a few on-line options. Please don’t hesitate to report a bad-driver-in-progress to your local law enforcement or Maryland State Police but if that doesn’t seem appropriate there are websites you can take advantage of.
The site we highlight is Zap-a-Tag. Use of the site is free whatever the function. Readers can see a historical list of reported license tags, use a cellular phone or a computer to submit an entry, and even subscribe to your state of interest with a reader like Google Reader. You can also add friends or group persons in your state together so you can see report activity of interest to you. There are several persons in Maryland regularly using the site. That is encouraging. The site also offers a Google map showing the latest reports in your state. That is a neat feature.
This site offers a unique service for a fee. We have not tried the service so we cannot say one way or the other whether or not others have been successful using the site. It looked to me like the site was showing the same last-five-reported license plates in Maryland for a number of weeks. This might mean that interest is low from our state or that not enough folks know about the service.
This site will send a letter (for a fee/donation) to your local law enforcement agency regarding law breakers in your area. The site also says that insurance companies receive regular reports to check against their records.
You can elect, for a fee/donation to be notified if your family’s license plates show up in their system. Businesses and families might like that option. You can also search their system for a specific plate but you cannot see all of the plates reported over time.
Our concept of using sites like this has a number of elements.
1. Reporting public safety license tags for personal and government owned vehicles.
2. Reporting commercial license tags.
3. Reporting organizational license tags and handicapped tags.
4. Reporting regular license tags.
5. Preferably the report types should be that an EXAMPLE SETTER was found and you are praising the behavior.
6. A poor EXAMPLE SETTER is seen making an egregious violation that contributes to the dangerous situation on our roads.
Using the sites is a way to channel the anger so many of us feel when we see unsafe driving behavior. Reporting great drivers that set an example makes it a positive experience. Reporting example setters may perhaps be far more important in the long run. You decide.
Please let us know what services you are using and what your successes have been.
- ZapaTag.com: Report a Bad Driver
- The Good Drivers You See
- Post Now – Md. mom jailed for expired license plates
- Crime Scenes: No break for cops caught on camera – Baltimore Sun
- An Ethical Surprise for You
- We Need Off-Duty Public Safety on the Side of Life
- BaltTech: Electronic license plates: a good idea for Maryland? – Gus Sentementes covers digital tech and innovation in Baltimore and beyond – baltimoresun.com
- New Maryland license plate marks War of 1812 – baltimoresun.com