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Suffolk: Know your number plates warning

PUBLISHED: 15:40 23 February 2009 | UPDATED: 22:34 05 July 2010

MOTORISTS in Suffolk are being warned that if you are using a vehicle which is displaying a number plate that has been altered or has a font that is not easily readable, you are running the risk of being stopped and prosecuted.

MOTORISTS in Suffolk are being warned that if you are using a vehicle which is displaying a number plate that has been altered or has a font that is not easily readable, you are running the risk of being stopped and prosecuted.

The stark warning was issued by police across the county today following a spate of incidents that have been reported in the past fortnight - and motorists were reminded that you may have your number plate revoked by the Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA).

Acting Sergeant Phil Smith said: “It is important that when Suffolk Constabulary and our partners in the Suffolk Roadsafe group are carrying out our function of reducing casualties, we are not hindered when using devices such as speed cameras and Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR).

“It is also important that witnesses are able to accurately read number plates of vehicles involved in crime.”

The basic rules for number plates are:

You must display a number plate on the front and rear of your vehicle, with black letters on a white plate at the front and black letters on a yellow plate at the rear

The background surface should be reflex-reflecting

Number plates should meet the British Standard

All number plates made after August 31, 2001 must display the mandatory font, with those made prior to this substantially the same.

The law states that you must not alter, rearrange or misrepresent the letters or numbers and characters must not be moved from one group to the other (e.g. E424 SNT must not be displayed as E424S NT).

That means:

No stylised letters

Don't move the space around

Don't misrepresent letters or numbers using screws or fixings

Don't misrepresent letters or numbers using squashed or distorted letters

No images other than the approved flags

Rules on character dimensions differ slightly depending on when your plates were fitted. Anyone whose number plate does not adhere to these rules may be prosecuted, and those receiving two fixed penalty notices will be reported to DVLA who may revoke the registration.

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