Sunday 10 December 2023

New motorcycle plates are a timid effort to fight crime

The size of the license plate will be enlarged so that police can see them better and identify them

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QCOSTARICA – Starting in August, motorcycles will get new license plates, larger and with bigger numbers to better be identified by police.

The new motorcycle plates will be taller and with bigger numbers (to help authorities identify criminals) than the current. Photo Registro Nacional

According to the National Registry, this change arose because many license plates already have six digits and this makes it difficult to identify when dealing with different situations, from accidents to crimes.

Kattia Salazar, director of Registry Services, affirmed that officials from some institutions had asked them to make the numbering larger, so the new metal sheet will be 51 millimeters taller, that is, it will now measure 153 x 205 millimeters.

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Although this change is a step to help better combat crime, authorities say more can be done.

Michael Soto, Minister of Public Security, recognizes that the dimension of the numbers will help police and citizens to identify the motorcycles linked in accidents, in addition to those that participate in crimes.

“In particular, I still believe that the use of the vest with the plate and on the helmet is quite useful, at some point we tried it, but didn’t get adopted fully.

“In other countries, this has been useful for identifying the people who commit crimes, not necessarily for reducing crime. We are going to see what results it generates (with the plate size), we hope they will be very positive,” said Soto.

Another problem faced by authorities is the location of the license plate. Some motorcycles don’t have space at the back for the current plates, thus many place the plate on the side, further preventing easy identification.

Making it bigger may cause even more problems, some judicial agents claim.

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Starting in August all new registrations will get the newer, larger plates. For existing, owners can request the new plate National Registry ( However, unless the change becomes obligatory, it is doubtful many will change over voluntarily.

In the coming days, the registry will announce the green plates for electric motorcycles.

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"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of online magazines where everything is Q! In these times of new normal, stay at home. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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