Washington Governor Signs Bill Banning Open Cannabis Containers in Cars

Washington Governor Signs Bill Banning Open Cannabis Containers in Cars

openbagWashington Governor Jay Inslee recently signed House Bill 1276 into law, a proposal that makes multiple changes to the state’s impaired driving laws. Among the changes is a provision explicitly prohibiting open cannabis containers – such as bags and wrappers with half eaten edibles – from being located inside a vehicle.

The new law, which goes into effect September 26th, makes it so that it’s illegal to have any non-sealed cannabis container in a vehicle’s driver or passenger area. A non-sealed cannabis container is described as any package where the seal has been broken or the contents have been “partially removed”. This would apply to any cannabis not purchased at a state-licensed store, where packages are sealed and label.

Those who do have open containers of cannabis will be required to keep the cannabis in their trunks, or in the row of seats behind the driver.

According to Shelly Baldwin, a spokeswoman for the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, the agency asked lawmakers to make the change to bring cannabis in line with open-container laws that are in place for alcohol.

The new law also restores the Department of Licensing’s ability to automatically suspend a person’s driver’s license if a blood test shows he or she has at least 5 ng/ml of THC in their blood (or if they have less but an officer still finds that person to be “legally impaired”).

The full text of House Bill 1276 can be found by clicking here.

TheJointBlog

21 Comments

  • Maz
    July 19, 2015

    These new laws are absurd. How do we fight them?
    -Washington Smoker

    • Terry
      July 19, 2015

      We need a new initiative written to change laws to something reasonable and we need to vote out the republicans that pushed these nonsense laws.

      • David
        July 21, 2015

        Terry,
        We’ve seen by Olympia’s actions just how worthless Washington’s citizen’s Voter Initiative law actually is. We’ve seen just how easy it was for Olympia to drag their knuckles for the two years necessary under State law to destroy State voter’s original intent and impose their small minded onerous new prohibitionist laws upon us all medical and recreational alike.

        What’s needed imho, is a new State Constitutional amendment stopping the Washington Legislature from over-turning citizen passed voter initiatives, until at least 6 years have passed (rather than two). And make any changes to a voter initiative passed law permanent unless changed by voters.

    • David
      July 24, 2015

      Maz, want to help ? here’s your best option:

      http://www.gofundme.com/saveaccesswa

      I am so grateful to the attorneys, plus all of those generous souls who have donated thus far, to help stop Olympia from destroying whats left of medical marijuana in Washington. Thanks!

  • Richard
    July 19, 2015

    Things were almost better when it was just illegal!

    • Agreed
      July 21, 2015

      Thumbs up

      • David
        July 24, 2015

        Does anyone out there have any experience putting together a national boycott ? I would like to see what is involved in a national boycott of Washington State business’s until Washington’s out of touch politicians either:

        I). Bring Washington’s previously but now repealed 1998 State medical marijuana law back (RCW 51.69A)

        2). Pass a new law that protects sick Washington medical patients. If you have knowledge please reply and we can exchange information. Thank you !

  • troy
    July 19, 2015

    contact pierce county norml on facebook to fight back

  • Anonymous
    July 19, 2015

    It’s basically the same law. However now they can charge you as being impaired even if you are not.

  • Mr. Yum
    July 19, 2015

    There trying to make money on it any way they can.

  • moldy
    July 20, 2015

    Another gotcha law to make up lost revinue, dickheads aren’t worried about public safety.

  • scott
    July 20, 2015

    elections in 2016 we need to also replace the congress and senate majority to demo since they are rejecting ALL the cannabis bills so far even more research federally and VA to be allowed to prescribe cannabis to vets.

    • Rob
      July 23, 2015

      The congress in Wa has been predominantly dem for many years so not sure what you want to happen.

      • David
        July 24, 2015

        Rob,
        Washington’s State Senate flipped Republican during the 2014 med-terms. The first time they’d been in power here since Reagan’s first term almost 40 years ago. This was due to a voter turn-out of <18% among key 18-29 year olds.

        In fact, Washington's newly passed SB5052 (which also killed my State's voter approved 1998 medical marijuana law) was in fact sponsored by an anti-cannabis Republican zealot, Sen. Anne River's (R), La Center. Being from a cross-road town of less than 2000 people where cannabis sales have been banned entirely should have disqualified her from introducing marijuana related legislation to begin with ! Senator River's tied a dead rotting chicken around the neck of every sick medical patient in Washington. Sadly, it's going to take the courts to clean up this Republican created mess.

  • Kristen
    July 20, 2015

    Don’t like this? Donate to support Sensible WA’s legal fights to overturn SB5052 here: http://www.gofundme.com/saveaccesswa

  • professor x
    July 20, 2015

    f u jay your just praying off every cent you can find ..scumbag

  • David
    July 21, 2015

    It seems like every law enacted in Washington’s State following State legalization is negative. They pass laws that either harms sick medical patient’s, take away recreational citizen rights, and turns law-abiding citizens into cannabis criminals.

    This manner of backward political regression/ repression is NOT what Washington citizens voted for in 2012.

  • David
    July 24, 2015

    This probably the most ignorant Bill I’ve ever heard of. What’s wrong with this State?

  • jim
    July 24, 2015

    the reason why a person cant buy marijuana at the smoke shop where people buy tobacco is because of what some may call the family oriented mentality where they needed new zoning regulations for the over 21 crowd i think the age of 21 is also ridiculous i used to do it back before was that age and turned out just fine.. but the overprotective family oriented zoning regulations are what they are symptoms of the klan an stupid excuse because of kids is obviously the klan it even says its because of kids and thats why. you can buy cigarettes and alcohol much more toxic things at most stores but we need a special store for weed , why? why would that happen?. marijuana was only made illegal in the first place as a way of repression of black people who were thought to do it and liberals. they dont call it the grand old party for no reason.

  • dan
    July 24, 2015

    this is kind of shitty but easy enough to avoid a ticket. don’t drive high and leave your stash in the back seat or the trunk if it is opened. Seriously, you would do this if transporting a bottle of whisky you already opened. this change is not a big deal.

  • Altitude
    August 23, 2015

    Thanks for the article TheJointBlog! We shared it and generated quite a buzz

    Check it out to see what other people thought about the new changes;

    CLICK HERE

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