Kissing while driving is illegal

Feeling affectionate while you drive?

Wait until you get home, or you could face reckless driving charges.

Hugs aren’t allowed. Neither is smooching.

Even driving your bench-seat truck with one hand on the wheel and the other around your lady is forbidden.

According to state law, drivers put themselves and others in danger when they “embrace” in a car.

Embracing on the go is a form of reckless driving, said Trooper Lance Ramsay, a spokesman for Washington State Patrol.

“Reckless driving is defined as willful and wanton disregard for persons and their property,” he said. “If someone is embracing another person while driving, that is considered willful and wanton disregard for others. If someone is creating a hazard for others on the road, we are going to take action before someone gets hurt.”

Here’s the law:

“It shall be unlawful for any person to operate a motor vehicle upon the highways of this state when such person has in his or her embrace another person which prevents the free and unhampered operation of such vehicle. Operation of a motor vehicle in violation of this section is prima facie evidence of reckless driving.”

My interpretation: Keep your hands on the wheel.

Talk road construction

The state Department of Transportation wants to talk summer road construction with you.

The agency will host a meeting to talk about the roads it will be ripping up this summer 5-7 p.m. June 17 at the Cathcart Elementary School gym, 8201 188th Ave. SE, Snohomish.

Left -turn arrow needed

Question: Why doesn’t the city of Monroe put in a left-turn arrow at Lewis Street and Main Street.

While Main Street is too narrow for a left-hand turn lane, a combination left-turn arrow and normal green light that would alternate eastbound and westbound traffic on Main Street would cut rush-hour traffic to a minimum.

As it is now, there are traffic backups for as much as five blocks because of traffic turning onto Lewis Street from Main Street.

– R. Jones, Gold Bar

Answer: Your reader has made an astute observation and suggestion. We contacted the state Department of Transportation in March to discuss exactly that idea.

Since Lewis Street is also Highway 203, the signal is under the jurisdiction of the Department of Transportation, so it must approve and implement any changes.

The department is now measuring traffic flow at the intersection during busy times. Computer modeling will be used to determine if a change would improve traffic flow there.

Although the traffic does back up for a few blocks on Main Street at some times, it is even worse on Lewis. The department must feel confident that a change to improve flow on Main Street would not make the situation on Lewis worse.

The Transportation Department should complete its preliminary study of the signal changes by the end of June.

– Tom Gathmann, Monroe engineer

Reporter Lukas Velush: 425-339-3449 or

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