A driver in Washington State tried the old ruse of putting a dummy in the passenger seat to illicitly use the carpool lane, but police were not fooled.
Washington State Trooper Rick Johnson said he pulled over a driver on Interstate 405 after spotting a suspicious-looking occupant riding shotgun.
Upon inspection, he found a skeleton dressed in a fluorescent yellow hoodie sitting in the passenger’s seat. The driver was promptly cited for a carpool lane violation.
A photo posted on Twitter by the trooper showed the skeleton buckled into the seat with the caption, “Does not count for HOV. Gotta be alive.”
Apparently, dead bodies do not count as occupants. A hearse driver transporting a body attempted this in Nevada in 2019, but was given a ticket. The driver in that incident told officers he thought a dead person counted as an occupant in the vehicle, The Sacramento Bee reported.
Carpool lanes — more technically known as high-occupancy vehicle lanes — are reserved for vehicles that are carpooling or for vanpools, buses and motorcycles.
In Washington, HOV violations can lead to a maximum fine of $500. According to Johnson, fines are reported to a driver’s insurance company, and they get more costly each time a violation is committed within a “certain period.”