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Cappy

CPTDB Wiki Moderator
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  1. Recently, AutoCheck (www.autocheck.com) has redesigned their website to make it more user-friendly. One of the new features on that site is the ability to find the history of a vehicle by entering its license plate. By doing so, you'll be able to see the basic information, including the VIN, without having to pay a penny. I believe this method is useful when gathering VINs to add to the wiki in the event that you have the bus number and its license plate, but you're physically unable to obtain its VIN. I've attached two examples: the first one in gathering the VIN of Nassau Inter-County Express' Orion V CNG #1007 (originally Foothill Transit F1227) and the other in gathering the VIN of WestCAT's Gillig BRT #404. There are a few things that need to be mentioned in using this method: The vehicle histories don't include a build date of a bus. The license plate must be the current plate on the bus. If you entered the license plate and selected the correct state/US territory and you get the "We're sorry: We can't find that car" result, either the plate was replaced by a newer plate, was built before 1981 (they had serials before VINs came into use), or AutoCheck hasn't received the title information with that plate yet. If it's the last one, check again at a later time. You can only use the license plate search from buses that are/were registered in the 50 US states, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. The Guam and the US Virgin Islands selections are also listed, but you can't license plate search the buses registered in those US territories as I've found out that they're "exported," making those aforementioned selections useless. It's also not possible to license plate search the buses registered in Canada yet. Although, AutoCheck does have vehicle histories from some of the buses up there, so it's possible that they may add the acronyms of the provinces and its territories to the list in the future... There are some transit agencies that are somehow aware of their buses being searched online and will make some sort of change so that the license plates of their buses can't be searched on AutoCheck again, unless these transit agencies reregister their existing buses for new plates. The best ways to get around this is to collect more than half of the license plates of a particular bus series and run those plates and everything between them during the night. So far, here's the following transit agencies that will remove the license plate info and is relayed to AutoCheck: Birmingham-Jefferson County Transit Authority, Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority, Central Florida Regional Transit Authority (LYNX), Chicago Transit Authority, Connect Transit, Eau Claire Transit, Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority, Maryland Transit Administration, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, Milwaukee County Transit System, Montachusett Regional Transit Authority, Northern Arizona Intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority (Mountain Line), Sangamon Mass Transit District, Trimet, VIA Metropolitan Transit, Westchester County Bee-Line System.
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