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Transporting A Rifle In A Vehicle in Washington

Discussion in 'Firearm Laws & Legal' started by L84Cabo, Jun 5, 2016.

  1. L84Cabo

    L84Cabo Orcas Island, WA Well-Known Member

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    Hi Folks

    I did a search and couldn't find anything on this. Based on sections 1 and 5 of the below code, it appears that one could transport a cased rifle in a vehicle with a loaded magazine also in the case, as long as the mag is not inserted into the rifle. Is that correct?

    Is there any other code that I should be looking at here?

    Thanks!


    RCW 77.15.460
    Loaded rifle or shotgun in vehicle—Unlawful use or possession—Unlawful use of a loaded firearm—Penalty.

    (1) A person is guilty of unlawful possession of a loaded rifle or shotgun in a motor vehicle, as defined in RCW46.04.320, or upon an off-road vehicle, as defined in RCW 46.04.365, if:
    (a) The person carries, transports, conveys, possesses, or controls a rifle or shotgun in a motor vehicle, or upon an off-road vehicle, except as allowed by department rule; and
    (b) The rifle or shotgun contains shells or cartridges in the magazine or chamber, or is a muzzle-loading firearm that is loaded and capped or primed.

    (2) A person is guilty of unlawful use of a loaded firearm if:
    (a) The person negligently discharges a firearm from, across, or along the maintained portion of a public highway; or
    (b) The person discharges a firearm from within a moving motor vehicle or from upon a moving off-road vehicle.
    (3) Unlawful possession of a loaded rifle or shotgun in a motor vehicle or upon an off-road vehicle, and unlawful use of a loaded firearm are misdemeanors.
    (4) This section does not apply if the person:
    (a) Is a law enforcement officer who is authorized to carry a firearm and is on duty within the officer's respective jurisdiction;
    (b) Possesses a disabled hunter's permit as provided by RCW 77.32.237 and complies with all rules of the department concerning hunting by persons with disabilities; or
    (c) Discharges the rifle or shotgun from upon a nonmoving motor vehicle, as long as the engine is turned off and the motor vehicle is not parked on or beside the maintained portion of a public road, except as authorized by the commission by rule. This subsection (4)(c) does not apply to off-road vehicles, which are unlawful to use for hunting under RCW 46.09.480, unless the person has a department permit issued under RCW 77.32.237.
    (5) For purposes of subsection (1) of this section, a rifle or shotgun shall not be considered loaded if the detachable clip or magazine is not inserted in or attached to the rifle or shotgun.

    RCW 77.15.460: Loaded rifle or shotgun in vehicle—Unlawful use or possession—Unlawful use of a loaded firearm—Penalty. (http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=77.15.460)

     
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  2. P7id10T

    P7id10T Cedar Hills Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I dunno, when my buddies and I head down to Tacoma, we don't bother with cases or unloading.

    TL001492.jpg
     
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  3. slimer13

    slimer13 Deer Park Well-Known Member

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    Yes, no mag, empty chamber. In a case, or not.
     
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  4. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    I keep a loaded mag in my rifle case when I take it.
     
  5. P7id10T

    P7id10T Cedar Hills Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Answering more seriously, I transport with my rifle & pistols in cases, unloaded, chamber flags inserted when prudent, and my ammunition is always in another case. Why?
    1. Habit from gun club rules;
    2. Experience from a friend's woes from way back in Michigan. If a LEO wants to give you a hard day, and your safety is questionable, or your following rules is gray, they can. Why give them a reason? Back then, as I understood the laws, you could not transport a loaded firearm. He was careless and drove around with his loaded rifle in the gun rack in his pickup.

      Every time I've ever been stopped, and that's dozens of times, it has always been for a good reason. Only once have I encountered a LEO who was a D1CK (all caps), and I mean a major one. And to think, I had just stopped off at home, unloaded my shooting gear and was headed to the lumber yard.
     
  6. L84Cabo

    L84Cabo Orcas Island, WA Well-Known Member

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    This is what I'm most concerned about (other than generally being in compliance with the law), is how LEO's generally see this and/or if this is a well known gray area for them. In my previous state (CA) it was legal to carry an empty gun and loaded magazine in the same case but there was a fair amount of confusion on this issue and there was certainly a risk that you could get a LEO who was not up on this particular code.

    I understand your statement about, "why give them a reason?" However, there are times where I want a rifle in the truck in as "good to go" condition as I can get, and that doesn't really lend itself to rifle and loaded mags in two separate cases. As long as I'm correct in my interpretation here and that there is no other applicable code, I will likely transport this way...and throw a copy of the relevant code in the case just in case.
     
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  7. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    If you keep the case out of sight or in the truck then you absolutely don't have anything to worry about it - unless your worried about getting pulled over and being detained while your car is searched. Even then as long as the mag isn't in the gun then your good to go.

    I believe Oregon even has differences in county codes so if you ever plan to go thru there then I'd do a little more research on those county's.

    (This is one of those BS laws that makes having a SD shotgun in a car difficult unless you can afford a higher end model that takes mags)
     
  8. PaulB47

    PaulB47 Hillsboro Well-Known Member

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    Ruling class, jerking your chains... o_O

    "Laws turn men into slaves."
     
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  9. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    Yes,you don't have to keep the guns plain sight.
    So there shouldn't be an issue.
    Now IF you are in a situation where your vehicle may get searched? WTF were you doing that stupid when you had firearms in your car?o_O
    Just a simple question:rolleyes:
     
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  10. 2506

    2506 Seattle Well-Known Member

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    Keep the rifle in the bag, keep the mags in the console. If you need a "rifle in the truck in as "good to go" condition as I can get" it might be more reasonable to have the mags at hand rather than fumbling around to find them in a gun case.
     
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  11. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    I stopped trying to second guess stupid a long time ago, but know there is enough of it around me to feel like I needed to add that part.

    Your guess is as good as mine but I saw a story years ago about a corvette doing 80 with a whole trunk full of pot and gave up on most of humanity then.:p
     
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  12. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    I like the idea of having a magazine right next to me. Then you pick up the gun and you are ready.
    The rifle is usually easier to find than the mag
     
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  13. revjen45

    revjen45 Snohomish County Well-Known Member

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    Contributed mainly to provide some giggles for the troops...
    Back in the early Miocene I knew a gentleman who had a second career as a purveyor of recreational herbs of doubtful legality. Behind the seat of his El Camino he had several kilos of inventory and a bolt action .410 shotgun with the barrel cut off even with the forend and the stock cut down to just the pistol grip. (in the Demokratik Peoples' Republik of Kalifornia no less) First off I was amazed that anybody could mistake that for a serious fighting gun and that he had no idea how illegal it was. Given that he had enough weight that posession for sale could not be denied the gun probably added enough time to equal life. I informed him that it was not a good idea and never rode with him again.
     
  14. Decoy

    Decoy Gorge New Member

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    Well the rules depend on who is interpreting them. Coming back from a match in Seattle I got pulled on I84 in Oregon. Just got a new bumper installed the day before I left and they didn't put my front plate back on.

    I had a "few" guns on board in my SUV (IE no trunk), Perfectly legal in Washington as none of them were loaded except my 1911 that I was carrying. He about had a fit when I volunteered that I had firearms in the truck and he could not see them. All bagged. I guess when you cross over into Oregon you need to have them visible, what ever that means. I guess they want your guns on seat sliding around. I asked if my dash was ok and he said yes.

    Any hoo he was drawing his gun as he asked me if I had a CCW. I said yes and he still drew his gun stating that I needed a Oregon CCW, which I told him I had that too. He covered me until I produced it. He said it was ok to have them bagged if I had CCW. Cant believe that they want guns visible even if they are unloaded.

    He ended up being nicer and even asked to see some of my guns (as a shooter not a cop) :)