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Ask a Trooper: Is my custom ride legal?

Customized vehicles may look nice, but they must still be legal in order to drive on Minnesota roads. Courtesy photo

Question: I customized the front of my truck. Is it legal in Minnesota?

Answer: There are two violations with your customized front end.

1. License plates must be displayed on the front and rear of the vehicle. The plates must be securely mounted and displayed horizontally with the identifying numbers and letters visible. License plates issued to vehicles must also display the month of expiration in the lower left corner of each plate and the year of expiration in the lower right corner of each plate. Plates cannot be displayed in the front windshield or rear window.

2. The light bar you have mounted is designed for off-road use only. Having this type of auxiliary light on while driving can make it unsafe for approaching drivers. If a vehicle with auxiliary lamps is driven on a public highway, the lamps do not need to be covered if they are within the height requirements of not less than 16 inches or more than 42 inches above the road. Those outside of the height requirements (including yours) must be completely covered with an opaque material. Only four auxiliary lamps can be on at one time.

You can avoid a ticket — and a crash — if you simply buckle up, drive at safe speeds, pay attention and always drive sober. Help us drive Minnesota Toward Zero Deaths.

A portion of state statutes were used with permission from the Office of the Revisor of Statutes. If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trp.

Jesse Grabow — Minnesota State Patrol at 1000 Highway 10 West, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501-2205. (You can follow him on Twitter @MSPPIO_NW or reach him at, jesse.grabow@state.mn.us).