Washington

GHSA maintains data on state laws surrounding a number of highway safety issues. Below is information regarding laws in the state of Washington. Please note that GHSA does not compile any additional data on state laws other than what is presented in these pages. For more information, consult the appropriate State Highway Safety Office.

  • Alcohol Impaired Driving

    Penalties

    Increased Penalty for High BAC Administrative License Suspension on First Offense Limited Driving Privileges During Suspension Vehicle and License Plate Sanctions
    .15 90 days With an ignition interlock driver's license Mandatory tow and 12 hour impound

    Ignition Interlocks

    Mandatory for all convictions

    Other

    Open Container Laws Repeat Offender Laws Alcohol Exclusion Laws Limiting Treatment
    Yes No No
  • Bicyclists and Pedestrians

    No bicycle helmet laws.

  • Child Passenger Safety

    Child Restraint Required

    Under 8 yrs and shorter than 4'9"

    Under 13 in rear seat if practical

    Adult Safety Belt Permissible

    8-15 years or under 8 yrs and 4'9" or taller

    40 lbs or over in position where only lap belt available

    Maximum Fine for 1st Offense

    $124 to driver if passenger under 16 yrs

    To passenger if 16 yrs or over

  • Distracted Driving

    Hand-Held Ban?

    Yes. Primary law.

    All Cell Phone Ban?

    School Bus Drivers

    No

    Novice Drivers

    Drivers with learner or intermediate license. Primary law.

    Text Messaging Ban?

    All drivers. Primary law.

  • Drug Impaired Driving

    DUID Zero Tolerance or Per se Laws for Some Drugs

    • Per se >0 for some drugs

    Marijuana-Specific Laws

    • Possession and Use: Decriminalized and legal for recreational and medical use
    • Impaired Driving: THC per se (5 ng)
  • Mature Drivers

    Length of Regular Renewal Cycle

    5 years

    Provisions for Mature Drivers

    None

  • Motorcyclists

    Universal helmet law enacted 1990.

  • Seat Belts

    Type of Law

    Primary

    Who Is Covered?

    Riders over 8 or over 4'9"

    In What Seat?

    All

    Maximum Fine for 1st Offense

    $124

  • Sobriety Checkpoints

    Checkpoints are not conducted. They are illegal without authorizing statute per State Supreme Court (Seattle v. Mesiani; 1988).

  • Speed and Red Light Cameras

    Speed Cameras

    Violation/State Law

    Limited

    Permitted Locations/Criteria

    School zones

    Citation Issued To/Liability

    Registered owner/Owner

    Image Taken

    Vehicle, license tag

    Penalties (Traditional Penalties)

    Maximum parking violation fine; no record; no points ($250 maximum)


    Red Light Cameras

    Violation/State Law

    Limited

    Permitted Locations/Criteria

    Where two arterial roads intersect

    Citation Issued To/Liability

    Registered owner/Owner

    Image Taken

    Vehicle, license tag

    Penalties (Traditional Penalties)

    Maximum parking violation fine; no record; no points ($250 maximum)


    Rail Crossing Cameras

    Violation/State Law

    Permitted

    Permitted Locations/Criteria

    Statewide

    Citation Issued To/Liability

    Registered owner/Owner

    Image Taken

    Vehicle, license tag

    Penalties (Traditional Penalties)

    Maximum parking violation fine; no record; no points ($250 maximum)

  • Speeding and Aggressive Driving

    Rural Interstates

    Cars (MPH) Trucks (MPH)
    70 60

    Urban Interstates

    Cars (MPH) Trucks (MPH)
    60 60

    Other Limited Access Roads

    Cars (MPH) Trucks (MPH)
    60 60
  • Teen and Novice Drivers

    Full Privilege Minimum Age

    18 years

    Learner Stage

    Minimum Age (Years/Months)

    Minimum Duration (Months)

    Required Supervised Driving Hours (Night Hours)

    15

    15 / 6 without driver's ed.

    6 50 (10)

    Intermediate Stage

    Minimum Age (Years/Months)

    Nighttime Driving Restriction

    Passenger Restriction (except family, unless noted)

    16 1 a.m. - 5 a.m. (secondary enforcement)

    First 6 months: no passengers under 20

    Remainder: no more than 3 passengers under 20 (secondary enforcement)

  • Work Zones

    Violations Affected

    Speeding

    Enhanced Penalties

    Double original fine

    Workers Must Be Present?

    No

    Signs Must Be Present?

    No