DIAMOND BAR, Calif. (Feb. 4, 2005) — The Virginia State Legislature has killed legislation that would have included height-altered pickup or panel trucks under the scope of vehicles required to maintain a bumper height within the range of 14 to 22 inches.
The legislation was opposed by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA).
In a letter to bill sponsor Senator Harry Blevins, R-Dist. 14, SEMA argued that the measure would have banned reasonably altered vehicles due to overstated concerns with bumper mismatch. The trade group noted that the bill also would have forced owners of many modified vehicles to spend large sums of money to reinstall original components and banned useful alterations that provide adequate clearance for on-/off-road capability and accommodate heavy loads, larger tires, improved suspension and water-fording capability. In addition, the bill did not account for new vehicles coming off the assembly line with bumper heights significantly higher than 22 inches, SEMA said.
Diamond Bar-based SEMA said it regularly participates in the development of vehicle equipment legislation and regulations in the states and has extensive experience concerning the regulation of vehicle suspension modifications. The association supports reasonable and relevant regulations at both the state and federal levels, consistent with the current model policy of the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators (AAMVA). “However, by this bill, Virginia appeared poised to impose restrictive vehicle bumper height requirements on these trucks without substantiating that the legislation would improve highway safety or provide other tangible benefits,” SEMA said.