MADISON, Wis. - The license plate issued for Wisconsin's Sesquicentennial will no longer be available as plates with white backgrounds and black letters or numbers start to replace the 17-year-old plate design, according to a release.
The aging plates, issued between 1996 and 1998, are creating concerns for safety and law enforcement, officials said.
"The oldest Sesquicentennial plates have been on the road for more than 17 years now, much longer than national standards recommends," Mitchell Warren, director of the Bureau of Vehicle Services in the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's Division of Motor Vehicles, said in the release. "Many of the plates are so faded and their reflectivity is so deteriorated that they can't be read easily, if at all."
Law enforcement officers have been struggling with reading the faded plates for a while now, said Steven Riffel, president of the Wisconsin Chiefs of Police Association.
The DMV will also be replacing other standard vehicle plates that have red letters that are also showing their age, according to the release. The American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators recommends license plates with white backgrounds and black letters or numbers.
Holders of plates being replaced will receive new plates over the next 14 months, starting in August, officials said.
About 160,000 Sesquicentennial and 135,000 red-letter standard plates will be reissued, according to the release. The DMV expects to reissue on average about 25,000 sets of plates per month through September 2014.
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