Letters to the Editor

Save money, follow rules

Washington state just upped the fines for some traffic violations, effective July 1. I’m not sure everyone is aware of these changes so thought it might be a good idea to pass on the information. Maybe it will save some of us some money by following the new rules.

1. Driving solo in the HOV lanes. Present posted fine is $271. But the signs have not all been changed. The new fine will be $1,068.50 for the first time. Second time it will double, third time the fine will triple. The fourth time your license is suspended for a year.

2. Incorrect lane change (not using signals or cutting someone off), $380.

3. Block intersection, $485.

4. Driving on shoulder, $450.

5. Cell phone usage while driving, $285. Only the “hands free” device is authorized. Law enforcement has been told to really start cracking down on this. Accident rate is increasing due to cell phone use.

6. Cell phone usage in a construction zone, $570.

7. Passengers over the age of 18 not using seat belt, $101 for both the driver and the passengers.

8. DUI. Instant arrest. The courts now are placing DUI’s on your driving record for a period of 10 years.

Also the old thought that one could drive 5 mph over the posted speed limit is a thing of history. According to the State Patrol the limit is now 3 mph over the posted speed limit.

At the Sept. 11 meeting of the Oak Harbor Police Department Community Advisory Board, Chief Steve Almon advised board members that action was underway to comply with the latest guidelines in traffic enforcement.

Robert D. Brown

Co-chair, Community

Advisory Board

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