A driver of a minivan in Nevada was pulled over by police because he was alone in a lane reserved for high-occupancy vehicles that require at least one extra person. His justification? He worked for a funeral parlor and he had a corpse in the cargo area in the back. While the police officer let him off with a warning, it appears that it is not at all clear if a dead body meets the requirement.
Nevada’s HOV rules do not clarify whether an occupant must be breathing and leans on federal law, which is not much clearer.
An official with the Federal Highway Administration said it is up to individual states to define what an occupant is – and referred the USA Today Network to the Nevada Department of Transportation for additional information.
The undercover hearse driver pulled over in Las Vegas Monday assumed the body in the back counted toward the two or more occupant requirement for the lane – but Nevada Highway Patrol says passengers must be alive and breathing in order to be counted.
“When you talk about high occupancy vehicle lanes, you’re talking about seats – so a person would need to occupy a seat to qualify,” said Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Jason Buratczuk. “This person was obviously a decedent and in the cargo area of the car, so they would not qualify for the HOV lane.”
There seems to be a general rule that you can never make a law that covers all contingencies. New cases will always arise that fall in the grey areas.
Via David Pescovitz.)