Laws change for drivers

SALEM — The transportation bill wasn’t the only bill affecting drivers that the Oregon Legislature passed in the 2017 session.

Here are some other laws that took effect on Monday:

Crash reporting

As of Monday, you will not need to report a fender bender if the damage is less than $2,500. This is an increase from the $1,500 threshold that had been in place since 2004.

Senate Bill 35 raised the threshold to reflect the increase in cost to repair vehicles. In recent years, many reports submitted to Department of Motor Vehicles because of the $1,500 threshold have been for minor crashes, consuming staff time that would be better used for focusing on more serious incidents.

Oregon Department of Transportation uses crash data to make informed decisions on how to prioritize engineering the safety of highway and road facilities, and to help provide focus for traffic enforcement resources. Raising the threshold helps focus crash data on incidents that involve fatalities, injuries and serious property damage.

The new laws say you must report a vehicle crash to DMV within 72 hours if:

• Damage to any vehicle is more than $2,500.

• Any vehicle is towed from the scene.

• Injury or death resulted from this incident.

• Damages to property other than a vehicle involved in the crash is more than $2,500.

Registration card privacy

Senate Bill 930 allows the owner of a vehicle to black out or obscure the residence address, business address, mailing address or vehicle address shown on the registration card and on proof of insurance or other current proof of compliance carried in the vehicle.

Hardship permits

Senate Bill 252 allows a person with a hardship permit to apply to drive for the purposes of participating in gambling addiction treatment. This bill applies to hardship permits issued on or after Jan. 1, 2018.

Three-wheel vehicle testing

As of Monday, a licensed Oregon driver will not need to take a drive test to receive an endorsement on their license to drive three-wheeled motorcycles.

Under a related bill — House Bill 3125, which took effect in June 2017 — no endorsement is required on “autocycles,” which are motorcycles designed to travel on three wheels, equipped with a steering wheel, a non-straddle seat and a safety belt.

Ex-POW registration plates

House Bill 2149 changes the registration for Ex-POW vehicle plates to permanent registration. New applicants for Ex-POW registration will pay a one-time registration fee of $15, plus the plate manufacturing fee. Persons who have current Ex-POW registration as of Monday will not be required to pay a renewal fee.

Crater Lake plate surcharge

House Bill 2922 increases the surcharge for Crater Lake license plates from $10 per plate to $15 per plate as of Monday.

The Crater Lake fee supports the Oregon Community Foundation for use on projects at Crater Lake National Park.

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